Objectives: (1) Assess feasibility of a smartphone platform intervention combined with Community Health Worker (CHW) reinforcement in rural pregnant women; (2) Obtain data on the promise of the intervention on birth outcomes, patient activation, and medical care adherence; and (3) Explore financial implications of the intervention using return on investment (ROI).
Sample: A total of 98 rural pregnant women were enrolled and assigned to intervention or control groups in this two‐group experimental design.
Intervention: The intervention group received usual prenatal care plus a smartphone preloaded with a tailored prenatal platform with automated texting, chat function, and hyperlinks and weekly contact from the CHW. The control group received usual prenatal care and printed educational materials.
Measurements: Demographics, health risk data, interaction with platform, medical records, hospital billing charges, Client Satisfaction Questionnaire‐8, satisfaction comments, and the Patient Activation Measure.
Results: A total of 77 women completed the study. The intervention was well‐received, showed promise for improving birth outcomes, patient activation, and medical care adherence. Financial analysis showed a positive ROI under two scenarios.
Conclusions: Despite several practical issues, the study appears feasible. The intervention shows promise for extending prenatal care and improving birth outcomes in rural communities. Further research is needed with a larger and more at‐risk population to appreciate the impact of the intervention.
Originally published in Public Health Nursing on September 14, 2018.