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Vaginal health startup goes beyond testing to treat women as well

Health startup Evvy offers diagnostic tests for vaginal infections. Now they are launching a full service platform for vaginal healthcare. This means that users can not only find out what’s wrong, but also how to treat it – all in one place.

“Vaginal discomfort is misdiagnosed 77% of the time due to a lack of research, so it’s no surprise that women have been suffering in silence from chronic and recurring vaginal symptoms for years,” says founder Priyanka Jain, co-founder of Evvy.

“The status quo of vaginal health care is simply unacceptable for conditions that are so common and have such a significant impact on our quality of life and health outcomes,” adds Laine Bruzek, who herself went through an ordeal, being misdiagnosed for months, before she started. Evvy with Jain. “We knew we could use Evvy’s first-of-its-kind data platform and scientific advisory board to develop a new standard of care—so that’s exactly what we did. Our new vaginal healthcare platform is the first and only place to receive comprehensive home testing; precise, integrative treatments; and science-backed education and support – all from the comfort of your home.”

Two years ago, Jain and Bruzek launched Evvy to give women a breakdown of their vaginal microbiome. While the test did come with a short consultation, Evvy could not prescribe medication; just making suggestions of over the counter products that might help.

Now each user will not only do the vaginal swab, but follow it up with a telehealth appointment, which may include a prescription. More precisely, each user will get personalized care, emphasizes Jain, and an integrative approach. “Evvy’s treatment programs include both targeted prescription medications and research-backed supplements to ensure we’re not only fighting the disruptive microbes—but the protective ones that help prevent future infections from regrowing,” she says.

So many women are given antibiotics to fight yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis, the two most common problems that plague a woman’s vaginal health. Yet those antibiotics can lead to subsequent infections and affect the gut microbiome, neither of which are ideal. As a result, women with chronic infections find themselves revisiting the doctor’s office with one problem after another. Meanwhile, probiotics, vaginal suppositories and other more holistic approaches can help in addition to proper treatment. Although some doctors have begun to recommend it, it is still not widely practiced.

That’s why Evvy hopes to break the cycle of endless doctor visits by offering in-person care and following up on telehealth chats until the user has hopefully solved or managed her problem. Now the question who pays for it? While Jain and Bruzek are working to make the tests as affordable as possible because they want them to be a viable option for women, at least they are not yet covered by insurance.

“Evvy services are not covered by insurance today, but they are offered with transparent, upfront pricing that is often cheaper than what it would cost most people to see a doctor and get tests and integrated treatments in the current system ,” says Jain.

Also, for some women, it may be covered by an HSA or FSA plan. Patients are requested to check with their individual plans whether Evvy complies with the guidelines. All users can get a detailed receipt, as long as her kit is registered, by contacting Evvy’s care team and then submitting the claim.

But Jain and Bruzek hope their customers won’t have to rely on their system for too long; the idea is that the vaginal microbiome test will provide an accurate and more detailed diagnosis from the start, which means that treatment will also be more effective.

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