Abstract: This study presents a cost-effective, energy-efficient and eco-friendly solution that could significantly reduce maternal mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa. Low-income countries can exploit the huge potential of ICT to effectively handle the challenge of shortage of qualified medical consultants and specialists which has become a serious threat to sustainable development in the region. Unfortunately, available telepresence solutions in telemedicine have extremely low penetration in emerging economies due to relatively exorbitant costs and lack of reliable power grid. Therefore, we developed a context-adaptive robotic telepresence, Sustainable Mannequin Robotic Telepresence (SMART) which is well-suitable for remote ward rounding in Sub-Saharan Africa. Two IP network cameras that communicates over the Internet using Wi-Fi transceiver module available on raspberry pi were housed in a plastic mannequin to minimize cost. The system was designed to operate on solar PV system or free energy alternative source to ensure availability of required electrical power at low cost. SMART system gives a better impression of the physical presence of a physician. The results of the comparative cost analysis of SMART with robotic telepresence available in the market showed that our system is more affordable with better efficiency thus increasing the chances of maternal mortality reduction among underserved populations.
Victor O. Matthews, Segun I. Popoola, Aderemi A. Atayero, Joke Badejo and Emmanuel Adetiba, 2017. Sustainable Mannequin Robotic Telepresence for Maternal Mortality Reduction in Sub-Saharan Africa. Asian Journal of Information Technology, 16: 138-147.