Mumspring, a Nigerian baby and maternity product eCommerce startup, launched recently a pregnancy tracker app, the first app of its kind in the country that is tailored to the specific needs of African moms to be.
The app provides reminders on early-stage examinations and connects moms with local healthcare providers. Created by Abisola Tolu-Odutola, founder and CEO of Mumspring, a health tech startup that aims to transform maternal and neonatal health in Africa, the Mumspring app helps women receive prenatal care information for every stage of their baby’s growth.
Tolu-Odutola, who studied Electrical Engineering at Howard University, has proven invaluable with the creation of Mumspring. She has an MBA from London Business School and an MSc in Risk and Revenue Management from Columbia University, and she is utilizing her knowledge by providing women with critical prenatal care information that helps to ensure healthier moms and babies.
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Reports say in Nigeria, OB-GYNs do not usually test for birth defects in the first three months of a woman’s pregnancy due to a lack of resources. Because of this, late-term abortions are more common in Nigeria as many women do not have the option to end non-viable pregnancies.
Recounting her ordeal, Tolu-Odutola said: “In 2016, my baby was born in the US, unable to breathe on her own. After what was the longest week of my life, she survived by a miracle. The relentless care of the NICU and the pediatricians were amazing!”
She would later learn of a friend who had a baby with the same issue and lost the baby in a private hospital in Nigeria. “That shook my core. It could have been me,” Tolu-Odutola told Face2Face Africa.
She started investigating the causes of newborn deaths and she conceived a restless desire to improve health outcomes for mothers and newborns in Africa.
As a result, the Mumspring vision to bring tranquility to motherhood was birthed in 2015 while the Mumspring app was birthed in October 2019.
The pregnancy app provides prenatal and postnatal guidance to mothers so they can be empowered to get timely professional attention when necessary.
“Having a baby can be overwhelming, even when it’s not your first child. The Mumspring app alleviates and prevents anxiety in new moms using week by week nudges and guidance to make it a beautiful experience for mums,” Tolu-Odutola told Face2face Africa.
She believes that when a woman is empowered with information, she feels confident to seek the help she needs. “The guidance on the Mumspring app has been developed taking into account the needs and realities of the African mom”.
“It gives her confidence so she is prepared to be a mother and once her baby is born, there is guidance on how to care for her newborn and what to do if there is a concern or illness.”
Tolu-Odutola said a journal feature has been developed on the app so that moms can chronicle their thoughts and vision for their new baby.
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According to her, the app is free to use and accessible to all moms with a smartphone. In the future, Tolu-Odutola said moms will be able to reach medical professionals directly on the app.
Mumspring has so far served five countries across three continents, creating over 20 jobs in Africa.