The recent Ebola crisis underscored the urgent need for faster, more effective ways to communicate with communities in underdeveloped countries and remote regions.
That’s why the work of Cesar Bandera is so important. An assistant professor in NJIT’s School of Management and a founder of the e-learning startup Cell Podium (housed in the university’s high-tech business incubator), Dr. Bandera and a team from NJIT are using Cell Podium’s technology to fight the spread of chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus, in the Dominican Republic.
Backed by a $1 million grant to Cell Podium from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Dr. Bandera and his team produce multimedia messages about preventive care and disease management that can be broadcast to cell phones — regardless of the carrier or model of the phone, and without requiring access to the Internet or apps. These public health messages are expected to reach as many as 500,000 residents in a region of the Dominican Republic where the disease poses a growing threat.