Connect with us

News

New IVF app soon to be launched in the UK

Published

on

Aura Fertility, an app that focuses on IVF support, will soon expand in the UK.

The app will help fertility clinics provide home personal care for IVF cycles with the aim of improving clinics outcome and patients’ experience.

The app will also support patients, guiding them through every stage of their journey. 

Aura Fertility App will provide women in the UK with personalised care, 24/7 support with access to therapists, nurses and nutritionists, and with optimised fertility outcomes. 

To allow users to get the right support, they will firstly have to answer a questionnaire that will allow personalised content and digital tools that will specifically help them. 

The app will also have a “mood lock” which will regularly check in on the users and that will provide them with the most suitable advices and tools. “If a woman is struggling in a certain area, we can flag it and serve her with coping tools and strategies to help her at that stage,” said Karen Hanson, co-founder of Aura Fertility.

In terms of mental health, Karen explained that once someone if flagged as someone who’s severely struggling, the app will contact their IVF clinic to make sure they receive the right support. 

Users will also be able to see how many counselling sessions they have available via their clinic, and in case they don’t have any, Aura Fertility will show them the closest registered practitioners.

IVF can be a very stressful treatment as only 32 per cent of women under the age of 35 who undergo the procedure, have successful results.

Karen said: “Whilst I was going through IVF treatment I was never assigned to any counselling or any external support. It was only after three cycles that I realised that the clinic I was attending did actually offer counselling sessions as part of my IVF cycle. I was never made aware of it.

“It can feel very lonely when you’re going through IVF cycles. At different points of the journey it can be very traumatic and stressful.”

IVF in a laboratory.

IVF is one of the several techniques available to help people with fertility problems have a baby.

During IVF, an egg is removed from the woman’s ovaries and fertilised with sperm in a laboratory. The fertilised egg, called embryo, is then returned to the woman’s womb to grow and develop.

The decision about who can have NHS-funded IVF in the UK is made by local integrated care boards. Their criteria include women under the age of 43 who have been trying to get pregnant through regular unprotected sex for two years or, women who have had 12 cycles of artificial insemination. 

In terms of the future of fertility technologies, Karen said: “There are so many platforms coming forward and I think it’s an exciting time for women. Not just fertility, but there is growing awareness around menopause and sexual health. 

“Hopefully with our app we can help transform the IVF experience through tech. For us it’s all about making support more accessible for people, allowing them to have an app in their pocket they can use 24/7. 

“There are some times when IVF can get very hard, and that’s when you can come to the app, check in, and find support.”

News

Menopause start-up bags US$60m in funding

Midi Health aims to expand access to insurance-covered care for women in midlife and beyond

Published

on

Midi Health Series B round investors and founders, pictured from left: GV Executive venture partner Cathy Friedman, Midi Health co-founder Kathleen Jordan, Midi Health co-founder Jill Herzig, Felicis Ventures general partner Victoria Treyger, Operator Collective founder Mallun Yen, Midi Health co-founder Sharon Meers, Midi Health co-founder and CEO Joanna Strober, Emerson Collective managing partner Fern Mandelbaum, SemperViren partner Allison Baum Gates, GV general partner Frederique Dame

The US menopause start-up Midi Health has secured US$60m in funding, bringing the company’s total funding raised to date to US$100m.

The funding round was led by Emerson Collective, with support from additional investors, including GV (Google Ventures), Memorial Hermann, SemperVirens, Felicis, Icon Ventures, Black Angel Group, Gingerbread Capital, Able Partners, G9 and Operator Collective.

They joined a syndicate of primarily female-led investors including F7, Steel Sky Ventures, Avestria, Muse Capital, 1843 Capital, Anne WojcickiSusan Wojcicki, and K50 Ventures.

Founded with a mission to close this care gap, Midi is now the fastest-growing virtual clinic focused on treating women in perimenopause and menopause.

The California start-up, which expanded to all 50 states in November, aims to help women navigating midlife hormonal changes.

The company provides patients with care plans that include hormonal and non-hormonal medications, supplements and lifestyle coaching and has partnerships with major healthcare systems, such as Memorial Hermann and benefits platforms, such as Progyny and Cleo.

The additional investment round is hoped to help Midi expand insurance coverage, hire and upskill an additional 150 clinicians, diversify service lines, amplify the conversation around women’s health and scale to care for over one million women per year by 2029.

“We started Midi with just one specific focus: helping women access world-class, expert perimenopause and menopause care, covered by insurance, and we have been at the forefront of delivering on that promise,” Joanna Strober, CEO and co-founder of Midi, explained.

“But what we have also learned is that addressing the health concerns of women in midlife is more complex than simply treating hot flashes and prescribing hormone replacement therapy.

“Midi takes a multi-symptom, holistic approach to care designed to help women live their best, most productive and fulfilling lives—whether that involves medication, lifestyle coaching, natural supplements, or other support.

“Our goal now is to expand services and scope to continue this comprehensive, personalised care far beyond menopause.”

Women spend more than a third of their lives in perimenopause or menopause, with more than one billion women globally expected to be in these life stages by 2030.

Upwards of 85 per cent of women will experience menopausal symptoms that can negatively impact their productivity and quality of life, yet 75 per cent of women who seek care for these symptoms do not receive any treatment.

The primary reason is that only about one in five OB/GYNs, and even fewer primary care physicians, receive specialised menopause education or training.

“Historically, women’s healthcare has been neglected, with perimenopause and menopause having significant unmet needs,” said Fern Mandelbaum of Emerson Collective.

“Midi is providing expert, empathetic care coupled with comprehensive insurance coverage, finally addressing this gap and ensuring that all women receive the support they need and deserve.”

To receive the Femtech World newsletter, sign up here.

Continue Reading

News

Start-up launches London Underground campaign to break down period stigma

The two-week campaign seeks to challenge societal taboos surrounding menstrual health

Published

on

The Irish women’s health start-up Riley has launched an ad campaign on the London Underground to “take the fear out of periods”.

Riley, an eco-friendly period product subscription service, aims to take action against period poverty and democratise access to period products.

The company seeks to encourage the introduction of menstrual health policies and foster a workplace where discussions around periods are normalised.

Its two-week London Underground campaign, which coincides with the opening of its first office in London, is hoped to help destigmatise periods and normalise conversations around menstrual health.

“The idea behind this campaign comes from the fact that free period care in the office is often seen as an employee perk or a ‘nice to have’, when it should actually be an essential offering in every office,” Meaghan Droney, eCommerce manager at Riley, told Femtech World.

“Our aim with this campaign is to flip those current mindsets and get people to change their attitudes towards period care in the workplace.

“With 79 per cent of menstruators feeling unsupported in relation to their periods at work, this oversight is clearly fundamentally unfair and it’s time for change.

“We’re encouraging any and all businesses to get in touch with us so we can support them in introducing menstrual policies and free period care in their workplace to empower all employees, no matter their gender, to thrive and feel valued at work.”

Research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) shows that only 12 per cent of UK companies provide support for menstruation and menstrual health, despite 85 per cent of women experiencing stress or anxiety when managing their period at work.

Data suggests that half of the women who take absence because of their menstrual cycle feel unable to tell their manager, underscoring the deep-rooted stigma around periods.

Fiona Parfrey, co-founder of Riley, said: “Access to safe and high-quality sustainable period care products not only demonstrates a commitment to employee welfare but also fosters a culture of empathy, equality, and respect, ultimately contributing to a more engaged and empowered workforce.

“Menstrual policies and free period care are a fundamental necessity for every individual in the workplace. It’s about ensuring that employees have the resources they need to maintain their wellbeing and productivity without interruption.”

To receive the Femtech World newsletter, sign up here.

Continue Reading

News

Singapore-based fertility centre sets up grant for couples struggling to conceive

This grant aims to support eligible Singaporean couples facing financial and family planning challenges

Published

on

A Singapore-based fertility centre is to set up a grant to support couples struggling to conceive.

Virtus Fertility Centre Singapore (VFCS) announced that it would set up a grant to support aspiring parents on their IVF journey.

The initial grant is set for at $50,000 SGD and, depending on the take-up rate over the next 12 fiscal months, VFCS plans to increase the pool to benefit more couples in the subsequent years.

The grant will cover the main costs associated with IVF treatments and procedures, including embryo retrieval and transfer, laboratory services and embryo prep. It will also be applicable to fresh and frozen egg transfers.

As grant recipients, their samples will similarly be given a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag, a service VFCS provides for all its patients. It locks the patient’s identity with the respective sample. The RFID identifies gametes—eggs, sperms, or embryos—at every stage of the IVF treatment.

According to VFCS, the grant will also include access to counselling services and wellness resources.

“I’ve witnessed firsthand the emotional toll and occasional frustration that infertility can take on individuals and couples, especially for some who are still young and healthy,” said Dr Roland Chieng, medical director at VFCS.

“The common deterrent of going for fertility treatment is always associated with the cost, more so in a private care setting where their only source of funds is through Medisave.

“By alleviating their financial concerns, we hope ReadyBaby Fertility Grant empowers patients to approach their IVF journey, focusing on their clinical needs and working towards a healthy pregnancy and less on financials.

“With access to the necessary treatments and support, patients can embark on their path to parenthood with renewed confidence, knowing they have the clinical resources and guidance they need to navigate this journey,” he added.

Tim Kwan, VFCS’s managing director, said: “We believe every couple deserves the opportunity to experience the profound joy of parenthood.

“With the ReadyBaby Fertility Grant, we aim to support aspiring couples on their IVF journey and help them bring new life into the world.”

To be eligible for the grant, applicants must be married Singaporean couples diagnosed with medical infertility by a fertility specialist and first-time parents who have not tried IVF before.

To receive the Femtech World newsletter, sign up here.

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2023 Aspect Publishing Ltd. All Rights Reserved.