Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.
CureTogether is a website and series of mobile apps that gather patients with 588 medical conditions together to share quantitative health data with each other for collective empowerment and discovery.
CureTogether addresses the following global problems:
1. Under-funded Disease Research. The most popular conditions at CureTogether are chronic diseases, mostly affecting women, that are poorly understood and inadequately funded by research granting agencies.
Our top conditions include migraine, fibromyalgia, vulvodynia, and chronic fatigue syndrome. The NIH research budget for these conditions combined is projected to be $36 million, or less than 5% of its total disease research budget. Considering that migraine alone is the 9th leading global cause of disability in women, the discrepancy is striking.
CureTogether provides a structured way for people to quantify their experiences and conduct their own collective research into these conditions, amplifying existing efforts to find and compare successful treatments.
2. Medically Underserved Communities. With over 5 billion mobile subscriptions worldwide, and yet the WHO estimating that 57 of the poorest countries in the world have a deficit of 2.4 million doctors, nurses and midwives, it’s clear that mobile technology can have a significant impact on the health of people in medically underserved communities.
CureTogether has members in 143 countries, and we are beginning efforts to translate our site into Mandarin, Spanish, Hindi, Arabic, Bengali, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, Punjabi, German, French, Korean, Italian, Danish, Swedish, and any other languages our members request.
We see the power of CureTogether to be a trusted source of medical information for diagnosis and treatment recommendations, based on comparative, real-world data. It is currently open and accessible to anyone with a smart phone, and we plan to make it available to regular mobile phone users as well.
Data can be segmented by country as well as other metrics like co-morbidities, biomarkers, gender, and age, to maximize personalization and relevance of information offered to people in communities where access to medical knowledge is limited.
3. Embarrassed Isolation. For acute, terminal conditions, such as cancer, patients are often well supported and more likely to be open about their conditions. For chronic, sensitive, and rare diseases, such as depression or endometriosis, there is more of a stigma associated with them, so patients will often suffer in silence rather than risk public embarrassment.
CureTogether provides an anonymous place to connect, where people can safely share information without social risk. We often hear encouraging comments like, "I thought I was the only one with these symptoms!"
4. Unverified Anecdotes. Patients often have to rely on low quality information around them - not only in under-served medical communities, but also on the web. 80% of patients go online to search for medical information, and what they find on many websites may be misleading. We aim to bring rigor to anecdote, giving patients greater confidence and empowerment in managing their health.