New pregnancy app designed for south Asian women in Leicester
Named Janam, the app is available for free and offers pregnancy-related information in six languages
Co-founder Professor Angie Doshani (R) said that the Janam app facilitates patient activation by empowering women with comprehensive information throughout their pregnancy, childbirth, and postnatal period – Image Credit: Twitter
The local hospital trust and the University of Leicester have collaborated to create a new pregnancy app tailored for south Asian women in Leicestershire. Named Janam, the app which was launched on Thursday (12) is available for free and offers pregnancy-related information in six languages.
It features visual aids such as diagrams and videos to explain medical procedures and treatments. The goal is to empower patients to make informed decisions throughout their pregnancy, childbirth, and postnatal care, The BBC reported.
Noorjahan Islam Chowdhury, a mother of four, praised the app, especially for South Asian women who are not fluent in English. The 35-year-old described her experience with the app in Bengali as “amazing.”
She expressed her initial concerns, pondering how she would navigate the process of giving birth to her child. In her home country, there was a lack of sex education and information on childbirth, and she felt too embarrassed to ask anyone for guidance.
However, with the introduction of this app, she found a solution to her worries. Now, she can easily access the necessary information in her language, she said.
The experts from the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (UHL) and the University of Leicester, responsible for creating the app, identified a concerning trend: a limited number of south Asian women were utilising maternity services, leading to elevated mortality rates.
Co-founder professor Angie Doshani, a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at the hospital trust, emphasised the misconception that assumes a mother proficient in English understands all facets of her healthcare.
This misunderstanding often results in disparities between the information provided and the mother’s actual understanding, she said.
Cultural considerations play a vital role, as women from diverse backgrounds often have varied expectations regarding their healthcare options and may lack awareness of the available support and how to access it.
“This can prevent them from making choices supporting their wellbeing and their babies and some mothers may feel hesitant to challenge clinicians or ask questions,” she said.
Professor Doshani added that the Janam app facilitates patient activation by empowering women with comprehensive information throughout their pregnancy, childbirth, and postnatal period.
The term “Janam” means “birth” in various south Asian languages, and the app translates its content into Gujarati, Punjabi, Urdu, Bengali, and Hindi, in addition to English. However, healthcare experts have clarified that it is not intended to replace in-person appointments or interpretation services.