mHealth refers to the use of mobile information and communications technology devices, including basic cell phones, smart phones, tablets, and devices that can attach to any of those, to support health programming.

mHealth projects around the world have demonstrated the potential of this technology to expand access to medical education and training for health workers, increase efficiency and decrease cost of service delivery, and extend the reach of health information and services to hard-to-reach populations.


number of mobile phones in use per person on the planet by the end of 2014


percentage of the world’s population with easier access to a mobile phone than a bank account, electricity, or clean water


estimated percentage of the populations of Kenya, Mexico, and Indonesia sending text messages

There are at least 11 ways mHealth is used globally

  • Client education and behavior change
  • Sensors and point of care diagnostics
  • Registries and vital events tracking
  • Electronic health records
  • Electronic decision support for providers, such as algorithms for community healthy workers who are diagnosing and treating disease
  • Provider-to-provider communication
  • Provider work planning and scheduling
  • Provider training and education
  • Human resources management
  • Supply chain management
  • Financial transactions and incentives