An ICT intervention to provide timely and contextualized reproductive health information to urban teenagers
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Kenya Demographic and Health Survey 2014 indicates that 15% of women aged 15-19 have already given birth while 18% have begun childbearing. Research indicates that Adolescents feel that more needs to be done to make information about Adolescent Sexual Reproductive Health (ASRH) available to them in a timely and contextual manner. Early pregnancy leads to poverty in most cases. There is a need to provide timely and contextual ASRH information to youth in a personalized and on-need basis. This study aimed to provide timely and personalized ASRH information to youth with the aim of reducing dangerous trends like unintended pregnancies, STIs and abortions. The study’s research methodology first step was reviewing information gaps in the existing sources of information through desktop review and through questionnaires. Focus group discussions were used to elicitate and acquire knowledge from teen counselors (domain experts). This knowledge was represented in the form of cases and rules in a knowledge-based system. A case-based reasoning system was developed through user-centered prototyping, this case based system acted as the ICT intervention that is intended to address knowledge gaps in sexual reproductive health issues affecting teenagers. The Pilot study and deployment of the system was done in Mathare Youth Sports Association. This was done by making the system available and receiving questions asked by teenagers on a separate forum. Responses generated by the system were compared to responses generated by counselors (humans). Observations were made on questions answered correctly and questions answered wrongly. These results were used to improve the knowledge-based system developed. The study conducted established that at least 69% of adolescents interviewed had access to mobile phones and had access to internet connectivity. This makes a mobile phone the most widely available platform to deliver the intervention on. As earlier assumed, most adolescents are uncomfortable asking sexually related questions to their parents. Most teenagers would rather ask sexually related questions anonymously.
University of Nairobi
RightsAttribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States
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