Health Decisions continues the quest for improved women’s health outcomes as the new decade begins
By Dr. Patrick Phillips, CEO, Health Decisions
I’m blessed to have a wonderful mother, wife and three incredible daughters. With so many important women in my life, it seems only natural that I’ve found my way to Health Decisions. The company has a longstanding history of driving positive change in women’s health – a tradition we plan to continue over the next decade. In reviewing research from the last 10 years, I’ve felt a sense of excitement for what could be achieved in the years ahead. Some highlights from the 2010s:
Contraception – The contraceptive market celebrated a number of firsts. The FDA approved the first emergency contraceptive in 2010. Shortly after, the 2013 approval of Skyla marked the first new IUD in 12 years. In addition, research efforts in male contraception greatly expanded with the launch and subsequent results from the first ever in-human trial of a male birth control pill, as well as a first in-human study of a male contraceptive gel.
Sexual Health – The first and second treatments for female hypoactive sexual desire disorder gained approval from the FDA in 2015 and 2019, respectively. There is a rising movement for more regular and public conversation surrounding women’s sexual health. With 2020 touted to be a significant year for sexual wellness, we expect this is only the beginning.
Migraine – Before 2018, nearly 25 years had passed without any significant advancement in migraine The FDA approved four new treatments between 2018 and 2019. With this rapid change plus additional options expected to enter the market in 2020, it’s no wonder Forbes has taken to calling this new wave of research “The Migraine Medication Revolution.”
Reproductive Medicine – A growing number of research initiatives are exploring causes of and solutions for female reproductive health issues. Progress has led to new options that address endometriosis pain, menopause, and infertility as well as increased understanding of polycystic ovarian syndrome. Additionally, with investment in FemTech booming, new digital health tools are offering women and their healthcare providers additional insights as they navigate reproductive health challenges.
While the past ten years have brought forth health improvements for women, many health issues remain unaddressed around the world. As an industry, we have a responsibility to build upon the successes of the past decade and deliver added value for women seeking improved health care.
So, what’s next?
Policy and regulatory actions – like the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2018 and Center for Devices and Radiological Health’s Health of Women Program Strategic Plan issued in 2019 – are helping to escalate women’s health concerns. In addition, a growing number of research programs are investigating clinical and pre-clinical assets in key areas of women’s health, including endometriosis, sexual dysfunction, HPV, urinary tract infection, and osteoarthritis. As early assets progress in clinical development, there is an opportunity to explore innovative trial designs that may increase efficiency while also improving patient engagement.
I’m eager to see and support the discoveries of the next 10 years, expand our understanding of women’s health, and drive positive changes through clinical research.
Connect with Health Decisions if you’re interested in speaking with a women’s health expert about your research and development goals.