As a pediatrician, I notice that children from low income families are not meeting their developmental potential in comparison to children from high income families. Although pediatricians track development, the tracking only identifies severely developmentally disabled children. Pediatricians could be working to optimize child development for all children, but do not because there are not easy low cost ways to promote child development. Parents want to engage their children to improve their development, but do not because of lack of time and knowledge. Similar text messaging interventions have been used to improve early literacy in children aged 3-4 years of age.

What it does

Concierge texting service for pediatric practices to engage patients and families to improve child development and increase attendance at well child visits and reduce missed appointments.

How we built it

We built a web application that is running in the cloud. Parents are enrolled after birth in the newborn nursery and give enter their phone and child's date of birth. The application then runs a chron job that notifies the parents three times per week with a fact, tip and growth to improve child development. On Mondays, parents received a general fact about the benefits of a certain developmental skill. On Wednesdays, parents got a specific tip on something they could do to work with their child on building that skill. On Fridays, parents received ideas on how they can take it a step further. Parents respond to messages when they complete the developmental task. The system tracks the number of tasks completed and creates a report card that the parent and doctor can view online or during well child checks. The system also creates reminders to make and attend scheduled well child appointments.

What's next for HappyBaby

Trial in a pediatric practice to get feedback and iterate to improve the solution based on feedback.

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