SEATTLE — In developed countries such as U.S. or the U.K., technology makes improvements to people’s daily lives. Now technology is being introduced to developing countries and making a big impact on healthcare, education and the economy. New technology is now being looked to as a solution to improve life in developing countries.
Access to healthcare is a major problem for developing countries. Diseases such as HIV/AIDS and malaria are widespread and there are often too few hospitals. One solution is to build more hospitals or care units, but advances in technology brings healthcare directly to people. Smartphones give people access to information; thus spreading awareness and knowledge. In addition, text messaging is a way to warn people about the outbreak of diseases or act as a reminder to take medication.
Technology is being used to a solution to improve developing countries’ schools. Lack of access to schools is an issue for developing countries. Cellphones, tablets and computers are used by teachers and students. For example, the organization Bridge International is building schools and providing teachers with technology to develop lesson plans. It communicates with a network of teachers in the U.K. about further learning techniques.
In addition, tech companies such as Dell are investing in students in developing countries. Dell’s new initiative called Youth Learning gives underprivileged students access to technology that will help them learn. Technology can also connect young people on social media and provide awareness of what’s happening in the rest of the world. A survey conducted by UNICEF found that 40 percent of rural Vietnamese students used the internet for education, and 34 percent were using text messaging for school. In city areas, 57 percent of students used text messaging for school.
Technology can also be a solution to improve developing countries’ economies. Access to financial services is one way to decrease poverty rates. Cellphones and the internet can be used to teach the importance of saving. They can also be used for mobile banking in areas where banks are not accessible. According to a World Bank survey, the number of adults that did not participate in banking dropped by 20 percent between 2011 and 2014. Additionally, there was a 13 percent increase in account ownership, mostly due to mobile banking.
Technology is quickly becoming the solution to improve developing countries’ major problems. Increased access to information and tools means technology benefits healthcare, education and economies. As technology becomes more advanced, versatile and affordable, these tools can be spread worldwide and ultimately help developing countries advance.
– Deanna Wetmore