Women’s digital health involves the initiatives taken by industry stakeholders and researchers, which include technological remedies, such as mobile apps, software, wearable devices and diagnostic tools that exclusively aid in improving female health and wellness. Since it is primarily focused on women’s healthcare, it is termed as Female Technology or FemTech. The term “FemTech” was coined by Ida Tin, the CEO and co-founder of a mobile based menstrual health app named Clue, in order to outline the growth of women’s health products. Presently, femtech companies are primarily focused on solutions for gynecology and women’s digital health solutions offer fertility and menopause testing, diagnose anxiety and depression, cervical examination and screening, contraception and pregnancy care. Additionally, women’s digital health sector is incorporating artificial intelligence with an aim to achieve life changing results in oncology by early monitoring and diagnosis of various diseases, including polycystic ovarian, endometriosis and assistive reproduction syndrome, and cervical, ovarian and breast cancers.
Women’s digital health offers solutions through the following mediums:
Mobile Apps: Currently, there are several apps that help women around the world with their healthcare and general wellness; these include menstrual apps, fertility apps and pregnancy tracking apps. Using these apps, menstrual cycle can be tracked to understand the menstrual pattern. Additionally, prediction of ovulation can also be done through which fertility window can be determined. Further with the help of pregnancy tracking apps, growth of the baby and changes in the mother’s body can be monitored.
Wearable Devices: With the help of sensors, devices, such as wearable bracelets can help track body temperature, respiratory rate, stress levels and heart rate and monitor general wellness of the body and also provide notifications to the users. In addition, HeraMed has introduced a fetal heart rate monitor called HeraBEAT that enables expecting mothers to monitor the heartbeat and pulse rate of the fetus.
Service: Digital services serves as a critical tool for providing patient-centered health care to women by allowing them to connect with doctors and ob-gyns from their premises regardless of their location breaking the geographical barrier with the use of internet.
Challenges Associated with Women’s Digital Health
Although recent efforts by various stakeholders have shown encouraging advances in the women’s digital health, however there are several challenges being faced by femtech startups and industries.
Future Opportunities for Women’s Digital Health
Given the stigma around women and their healthcare, women’s digital health is still in early stages despite various advancements in digital health solutions. It has remained underfunded and unmet needs across this segment has always been high despite the fact that women are 75% more likely to use digital tools to track their health. In order to identify the gaps and unmet needs, it is important to develop customized and focused solutions. Policies related to women’s health need to be established in order to increase awareness and prioritize women’s health. Further, a framework that allows entrepreneurs to traverse health systems and better understand market access and adoption requirements for women’s healthcare, is also required. In addition, with the help of affordable and accessible technology, the service industry is expected to grow significantly in the coming years.
Moreover, healthcare R&D is paving the road for femtech solutions in the medical field because of which the femtech business is expected to grow tremendously over the next few years.
For more details on this emerging domain, check out the following report: