Christine Marie George, PhD, an associate professor in International Health, is turning to the ubiquitous mobile phone to help reduce infection rates in Bangladesh, one of the planet’s poorest countries with one of the highest risks for cholera. Cholera is spread, in part, by poor sanitation and inadequate hygiene; handwashing is one way to reduce the likelihood of transmission. 

“The time when family members are at highest risk is the one-week period after the cholera patient presents in the hospital,” George says.

The Cholera Hospital-Based Intervention for 7 Days, or CHoBI7, aims to reduce that risk by sending text and voice messages to remind a patient’s family to wash their hands with soap. Ninety percent of Bangladeshi homes have access to mobile phones.