Home » Explore Stories » Chetna – TV based information system to educate pregnant women

Project Name: Chetna
Organisation: Department of Design (DoD), IIT Guwahati and Embedded Interaction Lab (EILab)
Project Location & Coverage Area: Assam
Project URL: http://chetna.info/
Area of intervention: Health

India continues to contribute about a quarter of all global maternal deaths with Assam being the highest contributor of 407 maternal death per 1,00,000 live births. Educating women about pregnancy issues, pregnancy complications, health care and raising their awareness can play a vital step in reducing maternal and child death as well providing safe and healthy motherhood.
‘Chetna’, an interactive information system to educate pregnant women, is a collaboration of IIT-G and IBM Research with support from the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM), Assam. Chetna is a body gesture enabled TV based information system to educate pregnant women in rural Assam. The Chetna project uses Microsoft’s Kinect as a means to provide a Natural User Interface. The backend was coded in C# utilising Microsoft Kinect SDK 1.7. The module is started when the user calls a particular phone number.
The system is serially connected to a phone which then cuts the call and obtains the user’s phone number through caller ID. Throughout the system, the user is identified through her phone number. Various gestures that have been implemented include ‘select’, ‘pause’, ‘resume’, ‘next’, ‘previous’, ‘main menu’ and ‘help’ These are mapped with different functions to help the user in navigation and control of the interface. Contextual & customised audio visual animation (through traditional Assamese home environment) is used to communicate maternal healthcare information in local language. Information such as symptoms and recommendations, food habits and tests and checkups are provided to users.

chetnaChetna also provides an interface to remotely connect with doctors and help them answer their queries. Unique identification number is provided to each health device, which helps each pregnant women avail all government services during migration. This information is context specific and provided in Assamese language through an easy audio visual interface.

Reach & Road Ahead

This system is proposed to be deployed at health centers where pregnant women often come for routine checkup. It is mainly designed for pregnant women from low socio-economy, low literacy background and no knowledge of technological interventions such as mobile phones and computers. In addition to body gesture operated system, it also allows body-centric features where touching a body part triggers information specific to that body part (similar to when we go and show to the doctor in real life). e.g.,
touching the stomach will trigger stomach + pregnancy related information. The project, ‘Chetna’ will be introduced at Bonmoja mini primary health centre at Changsari near the city as a one-month pilot study.

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