OvaryIt is a U.S.-based company with the goal to increase access to family planning services and advance women’s health through technological innovation, DTC contraceptive services, and scientific research. To further its mission the company has now received an Award for a Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Institutes of Health. The funds will be used to study the use of OvaryIt’s proprietary technology platform as an integrated technology solution to promote patient safety and workflow efficiency to increase the adoption of pharmacist-prescribed contraceptive services nationwide.
Unintended pregnancy remains a major issue in the US, accounting for roughly 45% of all pregnancies. Unintended pregnancies cause significant health and financial issues to mothers and their children, and these issues disproportionately affect women of color and women of lower socioeconomic status. A cost-effective strategy to reduce the barriers that lead to these health disparities is through empowering pharmacists to prescribe contraceptives. Although several states allow for pharmacists to prescribe contraceptives, pharmacists have expressed interest in providing contraceptive services, and patients are generally supportive, there has been relatively low adoption.
Mary Kucek, Founder and CEO of OvaryIt, shares: “Pharmacists are well-trained, trusted healthcare providers and are highly capable of providing safe contraceptive services. When we built the OvaryIt platform, our primary mission was to increase safe contraceptive access for all. We strongly believe that the OvaryIt platform has the potential to change the contraceptive landscape and will empower more pharmacies to provide these services to promote more equitable and inclusive contraceptive access.”
In addition, women who live in rural areas have a harder time accessing contraceptive services. Dr. Devin Bustin, CMO of OvaryIt stated: “There are roughly 19 million women that live in contraceptive deserts where they do not have reasonable access to family planning services. Because 91% of the population lives within 5 miles of a pharmacy, increasing the number of pharmacies that participate in providing contraceptive services is one of the most effective ways to increase access to contraceptives in the US. We are thrilled to have been given the opportunity by the NIH to drive the solution to this incredibly important issue utilizing our technology.”