The U.S. has abysmal reproductive health indices that, in part, reflect health inequities experienced by people of color. The growth of “FemTech” - technology-based solutions to women’s health issues - in the public and private sectors is promising, yet these solutions are often geared towards the health literate, socially privileged, and relatively healthy and are not always grounded in evidence-based medicine.
Our multidisciplinary FemTech Collaborative team is using technology to supplement the formal healthcare system to improve people’s reproductive health and advance reproductive health equity. As a collective of academic researchers with a unified vision of creating digital tools to address deficiencies in current approaches to sexual and reproductive health care, we strive to build technologies that proactively identify and address critical gaps in health care, with attention to the needs and preferences of people from socially and economically marginalized populations, as well as those with serious chronic medical conditions. While uniquely tailored in form and format to specific underserved populations, all our tools adhere to a unifying set of principles that we believe are critical to appropriately serving the reproductive needs of any population, and particularly those that have experienced historical harms. These guiding principles require that such technologies:
- Include community stakeholders in the design, development, and deployment of the technology
- Are grounded in person-centered frameworks and
- Advance reproductive health equity.
Each of our tools is intended to facilitate improved healthcare, being mindful of the constraints of healthcare systems, while centering the needs of the individual patient.
With national visibility and a strong infrastructure, we aim to attract new collaborators seeking evidence-based digital solutions to combat the current public health crises in women’s reproductive health.
MyPath helps women consider their reproductive goals, augment their knowledge about fertility and preconception health, and select a birth control method that matches their needs and preferences.
MyHealthyPregnancy (MHP) integrates individual-level input and statistical machine learning to deliver a personalized pregnancy risk assessment and support tool, communicating risks back to healthcare providers through the patient's EHR.
MyDecision enhances women's ability to make informed and value-concordant decisions about tubal sterilization, with specific attention to the decision support needs and preferences of low-income women and women with Medicaid insurance.
MyVoice is a patient-centered decision aid for women with rheumatic disease or cystic fibrosis, that provides information about the interactions between diseases, pregnancy, and medications; contraception; and supports decision-making about pregnancy thoughts and goals.