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06: Improving Pregnancy With A Data-driven App with David Schärf

15MWTD - David Schärf
David is the CEO and co-founder of the app Femisphere. The app supports women in pregnancy by tracking their health data, providing curated content, and by offering an interface to connect with their doctor. Learn how they collaborated with UNICEF and the World Health Organisation, how they integrated numerous patient data points, how they continuously improve their app, and their focus on business to business markets.

What you will learn in this episode:

– Why is Femisphere needed?
– How did Femisphere link in with UNICEF and the World Health Organisation?
– What are Spheres?
– What drives app updates?
– Do doctors pay for the app?
– Current partnerships and plans for growth
– What advice does David have for medical app creators?

Why is Femisphere needed?

There was a need from pregnant women for quality information with tracking and better support in their pregnancy. This was recognised by patients and by healthcare professionals.

The original intention was to create a generic patient profile to cover various diseases, but they decided to change to a ‘vertical’ approach. Pregnancy is an experience with many doubts, questions, and first-time interactions. Fifty percent of patients had questions with no immediate answers. The app has a variety of validated content (videos and articles) to help in multiple subjects. In addition to pregnancy, Femisphere now covers the first year after the child has been born.

How did Femisphere link in with UNICEF and the World Health Organisation?

A few years ago, those organisations were looking for new ways of promoting initiatives that promote breastfeeding. Team Femisphere struck out an exclusive and collaborative partnership.

What are spheres?

The app has a feature called ‘spheres.’ These are coloured visual representations of personal data. They allow tracking of your personal data and special moments in an easily understandable format.

What drives the app updates?

The app is being continually updated in view of app store reviews and user feedback. Additionally, they use qualitative feedback from users by way of gathering insights from video recordings of app use.

Do doctors pay for the app?

The app is free for doctors. There’s a premium (paid) version of the app which allows patients to access their full medical record and to connect directly with their doctor through the app. Additionally, the premium version of the app has more content.

Current partnerships and plans for growth

Femisphere is working with an insurance company in Abu Dhabi which has provided multiple insights within this culture. They’re also working with one of the largest clinics in Germany. They’re looking to expand to the UK and US, as well as investing money to localise and translate the app for different regions. It has been easier to work with B2B companies initially and then scale for further growth in all markets.

What advice does David have for medical app creators?

David is a fan of the lean start-up method and the Business Model Canvas. Validate your idea. Don’t be shy, and don’t be worried about others stealing your idea:

“The secret sauce is never the idea itself. The hard part is the execution. Talk to as many people (customers, partners, anyone who will listen) as you can, and don’t be shy about changing things to solve another problem. At first, create a solution that delivers one to three features very well.”

Find Femisphere on the app store or google play or visit onelife.me. You can also connect on Twitter and Facebook.

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