A female entrepreneur in Sweden developed a virtual midwife to help fight the myths and misconceptions about pregnancy.
In 2014, Bonnie Roupé launched the Bonzun app for pregnant woman. It acts as a personal pregnancy coach with symptom checker, so women get the required help and know when to seek emergency care, according to Business Insider.
“When I was pregnant with my second child I had a complication that nearly killed me,” explains Roupé “I had no idea I was so close to dying and couldn’t help but notice the lack of online support available.”
Roupé suffered from preeclampsia and didn’t know the symptoms she should be looking out for “let alone the words I should be using to describe it.” She adds that when she started Bonzun in 2012, very little was being discussed in terms of digital health so few people could understand what she was trying to build. Also, due to her own personal experience of complications during pregnancy, she spent a lot of time researching the resources available to pregnant women. She admits that she was taken aback at how difficult it was to access reliable medical information online.
According to Forbes, Bonzun, which is headquartered in Sweden, has reached more than 2 million people worldwide, and is used as a convenience in parts of the world like Sweden but as a lifesaver in places like Afghanistan and Somalia.
Around 300,000 mothers die every year during pregnancy and birth. The World Health Organization calls this number "unacceptably high," as most maternal deaths should be preventable.
According to a report by MBRRACE-UK, most deaths associated with pregnancy are caused by sudden cardiac death (35%) and coronary heart disease (22%). Pregnancy is also the number one killer of women aged 15 to 19, with one teenager dying every 20 minutes as a result of pregnancy or childbirth, according to Save the Children.
The Bonzun app follows how the baby is growing, but also acts as a virtual midwife that can tell you which symptoms are normal, and which ones are more serious. Roupé hopes to help spread reliable information. She also hopes to give power back to the women, and help them feel at ease, because some can feel shame and embarrassment if their experience isn't perfect.