42T article on data bias published in Med-Tech Innovation News

42T article on data bias published in Med-Tech Innovation News

September 2022

Although women make up half the world’s population, women’s health issues are often considered niche. 42T’s biomedical engineer, Marta Uncio Ribera, examines the issues.

Multicoloured layered graphical profiles of women to represent data bias in women's healthcare

In writer Caroline Criado-Perez’s words, women are being overlooked by healthcare systems. This leaves them “misunderstood, mis-treated and misdiagnosed.” Bias in research data itself is holding back development of safe and effective medical devices and treatments for women. The first step to overcome this challenge is awareness of the data gap.

Women’s health is a term that is often misunderstood – it does not only cover female-specific conditions. It encompasses a much broader spectrum, including conditions that disproportionately or more severely affect women, and ones that have different symptoms, outcomes or treatment options and efficacies.

Why is there a data bias?

Read the full article in Med-Tech Innovation News.

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Opportunities for innovation

Women’s health promises to be a huge area of growth. A range of new companies are targeting issues that affect women which have traditionally been neglected for the reasons discussed above – lack of research, lack of funding and lack of data.

For example, Embr Wave has developed a wearable that achieves hot flush relief to help women going through menopause. Elvie is revolutionising the breast pump market with its wearable electric breast pump which enables users to discreetly collect breast milk. And Micrima has developed a novel breast scanning system that uses radio wave technology to improve breast cancer detection.

There is no reason not to innovate in women’s health, to disaggregate data and to break the bias.

Marta Uncio Ribera

If you would like to find out more, contact Marta:

answers@42T.com | +44 (0)1480 302700 | www.linkedin.com/in/martauncioribera

Marta is a biomedical engineer with a mechanical background. Along with a wide set of technical skills, she has experience in medical device R&D. Marta graduated with Distinction from the Biomedical Engineering MSc at Imperial College London, specialising in biomechanics, and holds a mechanical engineering degree from the University of Cambridge.

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