“To make people count, we first need to be able to count people.” — Dr LEE Jong-wook, Former Director-General WHO (2004-2006)

ChildCount+ is part of the Millennium Villages Project (MVP). Reducing child and maternal mortality, by 66% and 75% respectively, have been identified as core Millennium Development Goal (MDG) targets. In much of sub-Saharan Africa, 10% to 20% of children die before turning five, and the death of mothers during childbirth, occurs far too frequently.

In the health sector, MVP emphasizes integrated delivery of a free minimum package of maternal-newborn-child health services, with the goal of achieving universal coverage. ChildCount is a mobile phone and paper-based informational tool used by Community Health Workers to reach this goal by actively monitoring children for malnutrition, malaria, and other childhood illnesses.

How it works

Child Count Summary

ChildCount+ is a mHealth platform developed by the Millennium Villages Project aimed at empowering communities to improve child survival and maternal health. ChildCount uses SMS text messages to facilitate and coordinate the activities of community based health care providers, usually community health care workers (CHWs). Using any standard phone, CHWs are able to use text messages to register patients and report their health status to a central web dashboard that provides a real-time view of the health of a community.  Powerful messaging features help facilitate communication between the members of the health system and an automated alert system helps reduce gaps in treatment.

ChildCount+ is free and open-source software built with RapidSMS. ChildCount+ is available under the GPL License.


5 Goals of Child Count

Register Every Child & Pregnant Woman - Create a “living” registry of all children under five and pregnant women in a community. Record all births, deaths and pregnancies.

Routine Nutrition Screening Every 90 Days - Monitor the nutrition of every child from 6 months to 5 years every 90 days. When a child with acute malnutrition is detected the program provides support based on community based management of acute malnutrition protocols.

Treatment Support for Malaria, Diarrhea and Pneumonia – track and treat the three major preventable causes of death in children under 5. Childcount+ manages clinic referrals and CHW follow-up visits.

Complete Immunization for All Children - Track the immunization status and follow-up with defaulters to ensure that every child completes their immunization schedule.

Comprehensive Antenatal and Post-Natal Care – Ensure that every pregnant woman attends at least 4 antenatal appointments and every child attends every childhood health appointment from 6 weeks to 18 months old.