Accelerating FemTech: Health equity by design

June 2, 2023

The second webinar in the Accelerating FemTech: Inspire series was hosted by Kent Surrey Sussex Academic Health Science Network (KSS AHSN) and was on the topic of using a gender equity lens to innovate in women’s mental health and menopause.

Following an introduction to the Accelerating FemTech programme, Dr Maryann Ferreux, Medical Director for KSS AHSN and host of the webinar, began by introducing the KSS strategy for women’s health and their vision to reduce health inequalities for women, by ensuring all women have access to the best quality health and care.

Maryann then introduced Dr Sam Fraser, Implementation Lead for Primary and Community Care for the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) for Kent, Surrey and Sussex. Sam introduced the biopsychosocial model of causality for mental illness and how this relates to the five stages of womanhood. She highlighted the importance of mental health interventions for every life stage and how co-design with diverse groups is vital.

Sylvia Stevenson the spoke about menopause and inspiring innovations to think about new products through diversity of thought. Sylvia is Head of DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) Development at IC24. Sylvia set the scene by sharing several menopause statistics including:

  • There are 13 million peri or post menopausal in the UK
  • There are more than 30 recognised symptoms of menopause
  • Symptoms can last on average 4-8 years
  • 44% of women experienced 3 or more severe symptoms

She also highlighted the importance of looking at innovation in menopause with an intersectional lens, taking into account the current lack of representation and potential for algorithmic bias in AI solutions. She finished by highlighting the five menopause-related issues she thinks developers should consider and a call to action for innovators to focus on solutions in this space.

If you found these clips interesting, be sure to sign up to attend upcoming Accelerating FemTech webinar on how FemTech can help reduce inequalities in maternity care. You can also express an interested in attending our in-person Accelerating FemTech events happening in Manchester, London and East Midlands.

Applications are also open to Accelerating FemTech: Accelerate, a 10-week support programme is for small / medium-sized companies (SMEs) from across the UK, that have early-stage innovations addressing current challenges in women’s health.

Find out more

Find out more about Accelerating FemTech

Visit the Accelerating FemTech Webpage