Stillbirth Prevention Campaign By theAsianparent

More than 2,000 stillbirths occur in Malaysia each year, according to data from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations (UN).

Stillbirth refers to the death or loss of a baby before or during childbirth.

Miscarriage and stillbirth describe a pregnancy loss, but they differ depending on when the loss occurs.

theAsianparent is a pregnancy and baby care platform in SEA that has brought together millions of ASEAN parents.

Now it is executing a plan to reduce stillbirths by 10% over the next 3 years, with a more specific goal being to prevent 500 stillbirths in Malaysia, the Philippines and Singapore by the end of 2020.

The team estimates that a third of the grief of losing a baby is caused by 3 major factors:

  • Sleep on your back after 28 weeks of pregnancy,
  • Do not consult a doctor in case of unusual fetal movements,
  • Smoking during pregnancy.

On its free app, the team has developed several features to educate parents on healthy practices to prevent these factors, through gamification and social platforms.

Gamify pregnancy Process

The stillbirth prevention campaign is called Project Sidekicks and uses theAsianparent app for several activities.

One of the stillbirth prevention features of the app is called Kick Counter, where moms record their baby’s movements for 60 minutes each day by counting and choosing the type of movement they felt from their baby.

Some screenshots of the Kick Counter feature / Image credit: theAsianparent

“Gamifying this task leads moms to focus on having fun. They can record every movement of the fetus as a pat, a kick, a kick, a twist, a movement, ”said Roshni, founder of theAsianparent.

“At the end, they get a score indicating whether the trends are normal or whether medical attention is needed based on previous sessions.”

As the third trimester can be a busy time for moms getting ready for their baby’s arrival, the app can send them push notifications and alerts to remind moms to do their kick count.

Using their online community, the team is pushing for pregnant women (intended for the pun) to sleep on their sides using their second feature, “What’s your bedside view?”.

“This is the most delicate aspect to follow but it is so important. The team found a study that found sleeping on your back in the third trimester had a 3.7 times higher risk of stillbirth, ”she said.

“Sleeping on the left side, in particular, decreases the compression on a large blood vessel that runs down the right side of our back. This helps the baby to get an optimal flow of oxygen and nutrients. “

“What’s your bedside view?” works by forcing pregnant moms to post photos from their perspective of how they are lying.

“Nobody wants to see pictures of people’s ceilings, right?” We can’t wait to see the sunrise, maybe some breakfast in the bed tray, toddlers waking their parents up, hopefully no spouses drooling! Roshni joked.

The team hopes this will subtly remind other pregnant women in the community to sleep alongside them.

Use an existing community for development

Total number of kicks from the Asian parent community / Image credit: theAsianparent

The whole process, from conceptualization to launch, took around six months to develop and was carried out entirely by an internal team.

“Rajan, our head of engineering, Mukesh, our head of iOS, and Vishal, our head of Android are all dads. So this was a project that they felt incredibly passionate about and were so motivated to get really, really good and go to market, ”she says.

Since the app already has an active online community of at least 300,000 Malaysian users, they have used it to their advantage when it comes to market research and development of these features.

“We did our research by analyzing existing kick counting tools, surveying moms online, and engaging them in test groups, not only to get their feedback on the functions, but also the content. that we had in the Project Sidekicks tab, ”Roshni said.

The team also turned to local experts such as Dr Ahmad Rostam of DoctoronCall for advice.

theAsianparent has also launched another feature called Healing Mode in the app, to help parents who have lost a baby to stillbirth.

“The Healing Mode was created because we noticed drops in our pregnancy follow-up that we later realized were related to stillbirths.”

“It’s our little way to help moms cope with such a heartbreaking loss. By switching to the healing mode, they get information on how to cope and come out of grief, verified by experts, ”she said.

Some screenshots of the healing mode on the app / Image credit: theAsianparent

For them to reach their goals with Project Sidekicks, Roshni told us that education is key.

“Thanks to our content platforms, we are able to share practical information on stillbirths and their prevention.”

“Besides the kick counter on the app, we are able to send targeted messages to users who are expecting a baby via push notifications,” she added.

The 40-person Project Sidekicks team is also currently hosting monthly webinars with local experts such as gynecologists and psychologists to talk about mental health and provide advice for a healthy pregnancy.

  • You can read more about Project Sidekicks here.
  • You can read more about other Malaysian startups here.

Featured Image Credit: Kick Counter on theAsianparent app and Freepik

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Jothi Venkat

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