Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Deaf people are left out......again!!!!

I have just sent an email to one of the researchers from my alma-mater (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine) who is involved in a BIG project in Burkina Faso. It is a radio campaign to reduce child mortality. Why do researchers, media companies keep forgetting that deaf people cannot readily access radio campaigns for obvious reasons??!

It is a very good initiative as it is life-saving.....for those who can hear the messages because the project involve targeted 60second message on the radio and radio phone-in programmes. The project was launched in early March and will run over a period of two and a half years. You can see the issue here?

In the email, I politely requested that the deaf population be involved in THIS campaign in one way or the other. They just have to find a way of doing that. Not doing that means that the deaf community gets marginalised for 2.5years and unfortunately bear the sad burden of child loss if they don't or can't access these messages.

Here is the link:

And the article:

The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Development Media International (DMI) have launched a cluster randomised controlled trial of an innovative child survival intervention.
The project is funded by the The Wellcome Trust and the Planet Wheeler Foundation, set up by the founders of the Lonely Planet travel series.
The campaign – launched on March 7 - involves the broadcast of targeted 60-second health messages on the radio and radio phone-in programmes that will run for the next two and a half years. 
The messages, developed by the School in collaboration with DMI and other partners, are designed to change the behaviour of pregnant women and mothers through increased awareness and information, and reduce the number of children dying before their fifth birthday in Burkina Faso.
The study represents the first time that the impact of mass media on lives saved has been either modelled or measured.
Lead investigator Simon Cousens, Professor of Epidemiology and Medical Statistics at  the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said: “We’ll be measuring the impact using a robust scientific methodology: a cluster randomised controlled trial. It will be the largest, most rigorous evaluation ever conducted of a mass media intervention and it will be exciting to find out how many lives can be saved using this approach.”
The first radio spots will promote exclusive breastfeeding – a behaviour which reduces the risk of a child dying from diarrhoea or respiratory infections. The spots will be broadcast on seven community radio stations in the West African country of Burkina Faso which have partnered with DMI to deliver the campaign.
“The project is innovative in three ways”, said  Roy Head, Managing Director of DMI. “Firstly, we’re broadcasting messages on all causes of death, not just individual issues. Secondly, we’re broadcasting very intensively: ten spots per day, and two hours of phone-in programming every night on every station. Thirdly, we’ll be measuring the impact more rigorously than has ever been done before. We’re hoping to prove that we can change behaviours on a scale large enough to save a lot of lives.”

Here is the equation that many people do not get:

From tumblr website