Given that women are the ultimate multi-taskers, it’s no surprise that they resonate with new Multi-Purpose Prevention Technologies (MPTs) – the focus of this episode of Busine$$ of the V. Dr. Bethany Holt, director of the CAMI Public Health Institute, shares with Dr. Dweck and Rachel the common-sense wisdom behind combining reproductive health with HIV and STI protections.
In an apt analogy, Rachel compares developing “co-administered” technologies related to women’s health with improvements to toothpaste over the years. Advances in dental health care have been introduced to the formula without requiring any change on the part of consumers. Same toothpaste tube and brush. Because barriers to adoption are a perennial health care challenge, the idea of integrating contraception with a reduction in sexually transmitted viruses is a win-win – especially given the current surge in SDIs in the U.S. and across the world.
Tune in to hear Bethany update Dr. Dweck and Rachel about exciting new innovations on the horizon for CAMI, which has steadily built momentum since its 2009 launch of the Initiative for MPTs. You’ll learn about exciting projects in the pipeline – game-changing new public health offerings currently at all stages of development – and about the educational network and resources CAMI provides.
You can join CAMI’s Initiative for Multi-Purpose Prevention Technologies for Reproductive Health here.
Subscribe or listen to previous episodes of the Busine$$ of the V podcast by clicking here.
- Bethany shares a bit of her background as a researcher and advocate.
- HIV, STIs and family planning have traditionally been kept in silos, which can make accessing related services more challenging and inconvenient.
- Multi-tasking women understand innately the integrative power of Multi-Purpose Prevention Technologies (MPTs).
- Bethany shares why public health perspectives are more powerful when augmented with messaging that takes into account and appeals directly to women in a personal way.
- CAMI started changing the playing field with the launch in 2009 of its Initiative for MPTs.
- Examples of some new and transformational technologies include:
- Advances that integrate vaginal ring contraception with anti-retroviral protections.
- Patches, gels and other forms of contraception that also show effectiveness in combatting SDIs such as gonorrhea and chlamydia.
- Promising new injectables for HIV prevention that could be combined with contraception.
- Using 3-D imagery to speed development and production.
- Bethany reports a major surge in the U.S. and worldwide in SDIs which, if left untreated, can do significant reproductive issues.
- Rachel finds a connection between MPTs and the way toothpaste manufacturers over the years have added facets to their product that benefit consumers without requiring any change or additional commitment on their part.
- When it comes to marketing to women, more choice is always better.
- Dr. Dweck asks about the marketing possibilities for “co-administered” products whose benefits are discrete but complement each other with protection and prevention.
- High-risk hot spots for people at risk of HIV and other STIs are very often places where people are already overwhelmed and under-resourced.
- Dr. Dweck points out that most contraceptive choices are women’s choices, with access and lack of education being the biggest hindrances she sees in her practice.
- The MPT pipeline: Oral PrEP and oral contraceptive pills have already been FDA-approved and should be introduced within a year or two. Other products are at various stages of development.
- Critical research is impacted by government funding and grant availability that can slow innovations coming to market.
- A big challenge to funding R&D: a lack of Big Pharma engagement and support. The majority of funding at this point is coming from the U.S. government.
- Much more information about MPTs, what’s available and how to track development is available at www.cami-health.org
Quotes from the Bethany Young Holt Interview
(08:09) – “So many women have the attitude, ‘This (a sexually transmitted infection) will happen to other people, not me.’ ”
(08:25) – “We need to do a better job of acknowledging that when people have sex they’re doing it to have fun, for the most part.”
(09:49) – “(CAMI’s) initiative builds on decades of innovation in family planning, contraception, HIV and STI prevention … and now there’s a pipeline with more than two dozen MPTs in development.”
(11:10) – “STIs are skyrocketing in the U.S. right now and globally.”
(15:03) – “It’s so exciting to see the innovation that’s now being supported for the MPT field.”
(19:36) – “ When women have more choice, more options, they are more empowered to take control of their lives around reproductive health – and their adherence is greater.”
(23:52) – “There needs to be new funding mechanisms for MPT innovations – VC money and other funders.”
(26:00) – “(CAMI) is a learning network that brings together experts from across disciplines … always looking for new, innovative ways we can educate patients and bring in new types of investors.”
About Bethany Young Holt
Dr. Bethany Young Holt is the Founder and Executive Director of CAMI Health, an organization dedicated to advancing the health of women and girls worldwide. She is also the Co-Founder and Director of the Initiative for MPTs (IMPT), and a Principal Investigator (PI) at the Public Health Institute. She has over 25 years of experience working on health prevention programs and research projects in the United States, Africa, and South Pacific. Her research expertise includes mixed-methods study design, data collection, and data analysis. She has collaborated with multidisciplinary teams of researchers, including clinicians, product developers, socio-behavioral and market researchers, funders, advocates, and community groups to build and advance the field of multipurpose prevention technologies (MPTs) – an innovative class of products that deliver varied combinations of HIV prevention, other STI prevention, and contraception.
LINKS FOR BUSINE$$ OF THE V:
Dr. Alyssa Dweck: https://drdweck.com
Author Rachel Braun Scherl: www.sparksolutionsforgrowth.com/about-rachel-braun-scherl/