Healthcare is obviously under strain today, but there is one field in particular that has been lacking in innovation. Women’s healthcare – which mostly focuses on pregnancy and fertility but can also include menopause, heart issues and more – has significantly less research than many other large fields of medicine. Pregnant women are a unique medical study, as it involves more than one human being and their state is constantly changing.
Unfortunately in the United States, this lack of knowledge is showing because of rising maternal mortality and morality rates. According to data from ProPublica, women are now twice as likely to die during the perinatal period today as their own mothers; however more than 60 percent of pregnancy-related deaths are preventable.
The CES talk “Women’s Health and Tech: Revolutionizing and Reimagining Women’s Healthcare,” included Lygeia Ricciardi of AdaRose, Dr. Eric Dy of Bloomlife and Kenneth Nelson of Biotronik and moderator Christina Wurster of the Society of Maternal and Fetal Medicine.
Pregnant women typically are checked by a physician once or twice a month, unless they are having a higher risk pregnancy. During the pandemic, the visits were often fewer and farther between, which put the patient more at risk for missing a diagnosis that could have helped them. Bloomlife is offering a type of wearable that goes around the mother’s bump and can monitor essential activities like the beginnings of labor.
The wearable would report data back to a clinician as well as the mother, which gives the mother the knowledge that she craves but makes it clear to the clinician if further treatment is needed. This helps to fill the gap left between visits and can prevent issues like preterm birth.
Now that there is so much connected care not he horizon, there can be more people on the patient’s care team, including the patient. Google can only offer so much accurate information; the rest of what is happening within a woman’s body – particularly during pregnancy – feels mysterious and scary much of the time. A database that the patient can access themselves and share with other potential doctors, such as a cardiologist or psychiatrist, could help save and improve lives.