Infant mortality rates are on the rise, and traumatic pregnancies or premature births can cost 15 times more than healthy births in health-care costs. Text messages was the chosen medium because texting is highly popular among women of childbearing age and minority populations, many of whom do not have fast access to the information.
By texting BABY to 511411 (or BEBE for Spanish), women will receive three free text messages a week that are timed to her due date. The messages will have information about birth defects prevention, immunization, nutrition and mental health.
The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy is partnering with Johnson & Johnson, wireless carriers, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition.