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The world has gotten bit smaller for mHealth advocates.
Healthcare providers and other interested parties who want to see how mHealth is developing in places outside the United States now have an online resource to track market data in developing countries. The Mobile and Development Intelligence (MDI) portal, rolled out in June by the GSMA, offers information on expenditures and availability of health services and allows users to tabulate, graph, map and export datasets.
"MDI is an open Data portal for the developing world mobile industry. We believe that open access to high quality data will improve business decision-making, increase total investment from both the commercial mobile industry and the development sector and accelerate economic, environmental and social impact from mobile solutions," an introduction to the site states.
"A challenge facing mobile industry stakeholders in the developing world is the lack of publicly available data and analysis to support their business decision-making and to clarify the socio-economic impact of mobile. MDI will fill this information gap and will aggregate and host data from multiple sources such as the World Bank, UN, member operators and from vendors and development organizations," the introduction says. "There are nearly 5 billion mobile connections in the developing world, increasing by 18 per second. The industry is moving beyond basic voice to the use of mobile to deliver services in adjacent sectors such as health, financial services, agriculture and education. As the most widely adopted technology in history, mobile is uniquely positioned to drive economic, environmental and social change."
Other features of the site include a directory of more than 450 mHealth products and services and more than 1,300 organizations in the mHealth space, as well as mobile network coverage maps that show the geographic reach of more than 180 mobile network operators in 99 developing countries, divided into 2G, 3G and 4G coverage.
Also, the site offers what’s called n mHealth "impact pathway" that illustrates the "theory of change." This allows users to calculate how mHealth projects would bring about short-, medium- and long-term changes tat improve lives in certain regions.
The free portal can be accessed at www.mobiledevelopmentintelligence.com.
Launched in 1982 as Group Speciale Mobile by the Confederation of European Posts and Telecommunications, the GSMA now represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. spanning more than 220 countries and seeks to unite nearly 800 of the world’s mobile operators, as well as more than 200 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers, Internet companies and media and entertainment organizations. The GSMA also produces events such as the Mobile World Congress and Mobile Asia Congress.
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