How Mobile Tech Is Helping Ugandan Women Protect Their Vaginal Health
The BVKit brings much-needed gynecological care into the homes of those who need it most.
Image via Wikimedia
Nobody likes going to the gynecologist. But for many, that distaste is a luxury—women throughout Uganda and other parts of Africa often lack access to basic gynecological care. That’s why a group of Ugandan students developed a brand new app, allowing women to diagnose themselves from home—without having to meet a doctor.
Known as The Her Heatlth BVKit, the new product includes both the app (called Vaginosis) and a reusable pH sensor. Women simply pee into the cup and then use the sensor to detect pH levels. Once detected, the app will tell women whether or not there’s a likely infection, and list nearby doctors who can treat it.
Image via Pixabay
According to Fusion, many women in Uganda struggle to find quality women’s healthcare. The country is home to one of the worst ranked healthcare systems in the world—and women fare particularly poorly. Women’s health issues are often seen as shameful, so many women simply don’t seek out the medical care they so desperately need. An estimated 50.9% of women in Uganda struggle with bacterial vaginosis. Left untreated, women become more susceptible to STDS, including HIV, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. Women may even increase their risk of HPV, which leads to cervical cancer. The BVKit hopes to solve the problem before it starts.
While only 5 percent of women in Uganda have smartphones, the numbers are growing, and the app’s designers hope to spread it to other parts of Africa like Nigeria and South Africa, where nearly 30 percent have a smartphone.
To learn more about the BVKit and Vaginosis, meet the students who designed it here.