Multimedia Messaging for Emergency Preparedness and Response

Project Details
The project was a contract by CDC/OPHPR Division of Emergency Operations.
Project Goals
The goal of the project was to provide CDC with the ability to rapidly and cost-effectively deploy impactful m-health and m-learning campaigns anywhere in the world.
Project Results
Launched two m-health and m-learning campaigns, using a cloud-based tool that automatically prepares content for broadcast to cell phone.

“Multimedia messaging is an easily understood, effective, and low-burden way to reach target populations via text, audio, and video.”
Project Overview
In November 2012, during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the U.S. Public Health Service Rapid Deployment Force-3 (RDF-3) arrived in New Jersey to establish Federal Medical Stations for patients who could not access needed services at regular shelters. Power outages interrupted most cell phone towers, hampering wireless broadband and even voice calls on cell phones. Moreover, wind damage took out conventional wired Internet. However, SMS and MMS, which require less power and bandwidth than wireless voice or broadband, were reliable.

CDC reached out to CellPodium to use the CMS to broadcast logistics videos with mobilization instructions to the cell phones of RDF-3 personnel, and help coordinate response operations. A mobile multimedia campaign was developed that provided demobilization tips for the RDF-3 team stationed in Fort Dix, New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy.
Project Execution
The solution delivered by CellPodium was easy to use, maintain, scale, and accommodated the rapid global evolution in cell phone technology and adoption. CDC staff was able to repurpose for mobile delivery its existing media assets, and the solution provided m-health and m-learning campaign administrators with campaign analytics. To reduce the monthly cost of each campaign, the solution was as automated as possible and spread the fixed-cost of solution maintenance over multiple public health system clients.

CellPodium created two campaigns, dissiminating multi-media messaging with content regarding behavior in emergency situations. The objective was met without requiring of the recipients reliable electricity, transportation, internet connectivity, advanced reading skills, or familiarity with computers or smartphones.
Project Impact
Following the successful CDC campaigns, CellPodium created the following campaigns:

  • Division of Strategic National Stockpile Anthrax Vaccination Campaign
    The goal of this campaign was to evaluate the feasibility of guiding participants through their anthrax vaccination protocol via a campaign of SMS messages, and the utility of the CMS in the deployment and monitoring of such a campaign.
  • Substance Abuse Prevention Program for Adolescents with FASD
    In response to the dearth of Interventions designed specifically for adolescents with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, and the need for evidence-based preventive intervention programs for this population, Cell Podium is supporting North Carolina-based Innovation Research and Training and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism in an intervention pilot to benefit adolescents with FASD at risk for substance use and abuse.
  • Public Health Broadcasts in the Dominican Republic
    The Dominican Republic (DR) M-health campaign is an initiative launched in 2014 at the New Jersey Institute of Technology to educate underserved populations in DR about relevant health topics with the intention of improving their quality of life.