The Health Resources and Services Administration at HHS plans to incorporate electronic health-record data into an evaluation of the Text4baby outreach program, through which expectant women and mothers of infants can sign up to get pregnancy and infant-care information from HHS via text message.
HRSA looks to link EHR, survey data in Text4baby evaluation
Health centers in four communities will recruit both subscribers and nonsubscribers to Text4baby to participate in the consumer survey portion of the evaluation, according to a notice of the proposed data collection published in Friday's Federal Register. For survey participants who consent to release of their EHRs, "selected data" from their health records will be linked to responses they provide during a telephone survey conducted before and after they deliver their child. HRSA didn't provide further details about the proposed comparison of EHR and telephone-survey data.
The evaluation aims to gather basic information about the women using Text4baby, assess subscribers' experience using the service, and "determine whether enrollment in Text4baby is associated with healthy behaviors and timely access to health care during pregnancy and an infant's first year of life," according to the Federal Register notice.
Other components of the Text4baby evaluation include focus-group interviews with Text4baby subscribers, interviews with healthcare providers in the four selected communities, and interviews with public and private stakeholders in the program.
Information gained from the study will help HHS "understand the usefulness of mobile health technology and the potential for expanding and/or adapting mobile phone messaging to additional health topics or conditions," as well as "offer insight into planning and implementing similar projects," according to the notice.
The Text4baby application was developed by the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition, which now claims more than 500 public and private-sector partners. Launched in 2010, the program relays text-based messages reminding mothers of their clinical appointment as well as other personally targeted information. Text4baby has more than 190,000 subscribers, coalition CEO Judy Meehan said last month.
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