Solving a Global Problem: mHealth for Chronic Diseases

Highlights from the mHealth session at GSMA Mobile World Congress called “Solving a Global Problem: mHealth for Chronic Diseases”:

  • Sameer Pujari of the World Health Organization (WHO) and Hani Eskander of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) present their recent partnership and new initiative, mHealth for Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs). More on this new partnership below!
Hani Eskander of the ITU speaking on the ITU-WHO partnership at the session on mHealth for chronic diseases.

Hani Eskander, ITU speaking on the ITU-WHO partnership.

  • Diabetes Director of the GSMA – Michael Curran – describes how “mobile Health solutions could save 400 billion from healthcare bills in developed countries in 2017,” and the challenges that lie ahead.



ITU-WHO Mobile Health for NCDs Initiative

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This initiative is a ground breaking new partnership between ITU and WHO focusing on the use of mobile technology to improve non-communicable diseases (NCDs) prevention and treatment. It aims to contribute to global and national efforts to save lives, minimize illness and disability, and reduce the social and economic burden due to NCDs.

mHealth-mobilephoneThe initiative, in its initial 4-year period, will scale-up mobile technology in eight priority countries, at least one in each region, for NCDs prevention, treatment and policy enforcement. Activities will be two-fold: mHealth operational projects will be implemented within countries, and standard operating procedures developed for running mHealth NCDs intervention package to support more traditional NCDs prevention and control work. Mobile solutions will be primarily sms or apps based and will include a range of services including mAwareness, mTraining, mBehavioural change, mSurveillance, mTreatment, mDisease management and mScreening building on existing successful pilots and scaling them to a population level. Countries will choose the interventions that best suit their needs.

Visit the ITU-WHO partnership website for more information on this groundbreaking initiative.


Connected Living Seminar Series – Solving a global problem: mHealth for chronic diseases

About this Seminar:

Thursday 28 February, 11:00 – 12:15

There is growing recognition that non-communicable diseases (NCDs) dominate health care needs and expenditure in all developed and most low and middle-income countries. NCDs (heart diseases, strokes, cancers, diabetes, and chronic lung disease) cause an estimated 36 million deaths every year, including 9 million people dying prematurely before the age of 60. This seminar will be led by a panel which will include expert representatives from government, international organizations, and the public and private sectors. Discussions will focus on: How mobile solutions can be used for NCD prevention, treatment and enforcement of policies, with case studies; how mHealth for NCDs can harness the best technology and expertise available in the world and make it available to all countries to fight NCDs; how successful pilots can be taken to the world stage through a global UN, private sector and government partnership.

Moderator: Sameer Pujari – mHealth Technical Officer, WHO.

Speakers: Hani Eskandar, Leader of ITC Applications, ITU. Michael Curran, Diabetes Director, GSMA. Dr Oliver Harrison, Head of Strategy, Health Authority Abu Dhabi. Dr Caroline Free, Senior Lecturer, London School of Hygiene. H.E. Miss Sylvia Poll, Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Representative of Costa Rica to the UN.

The other upcoming mobile health (mHealth) sessions at the GSMA Mobile World Congress are part of the Connected Living Seminar Series. To find out more, view the Connected Living Guide (PDF). Here is a list of key upcoming mHealth sessions taking place today at the MWC, in Hall 1, Level 1, Room C1.1:

  • Connected Living – End user needs for successful mHealth solutions: 12:30 – 13:30
  • Introducing the Mobile World Capital mHealth Competence Center: 13:45 – 14:45
  • Government Activity in mHealth and Opportunities for Mobile: 15:00 – 16:00

SMS Diabetes in Gabon : Changing Diabetes, one SMS at a time

The Geneva Health Forum will be held in Geneva (Switzerland) from 18 – 20 April 2012. Many interesting projects about health and innovation will be presented.

From UniversalDoctor we want to underline the important contribution of a particular mobile health project to Global health.

SMS Diabetes in Gabon : Changing Diabetes, one SMS at a time

“Dealing with NCDs in low-resource settings is forcing healthcare professionals and local authorities to “think out of the box” and implement creative solutions in order to address the NCDs challenge in their countries. This situation led to the creation of a diabetes education and support platform fully carried through SMS, allowing information to reach thousands of patients and providing a reliable channel to ask questions about diabetes.

The SMS Diabetes project aims to address the challenge of the huge burden of non-communicable diseases, and the increasing difficulty to manage them in LMIC, where only limited means are available to support and care for a large amount of patients and a large scope of conditions. SMS Diabetes allows healthcare professionals to provide diabetes information and education to thousands of patients that have limited access to medical consultations. It also creates a constant communication channel with those patients, giving them the means to ask questions and voice concerns to their doctors, without having to wait until their next hospital appointment.”

For more information about the project visit :

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