HerStory, a new smartphone app that enables women to share health advice and stories with each other, was recently launched by 22otters, a Khosla Ventures-funded digital health startup (www.22otters.com). Research shows that listening to and speaking personal stories is therapeutic. The HerStory app is a safe place for women to share their experiences with others by using their voices to record supportive personal stories and practical tips. Audio is more compelling and intimate than text, and more private than video. The HerStory app is at the sweet spot in a crowded health app marketplace that often focuses on diet and exercise in the healthy patient but does not offer much for the chronically or acutely ill.
The HerStory app serves as a mobile support group focused on women's health issues. Beginning with breast cancer and mastectomy, HerStory creates a community that offers ready advice, reassurance and support anywhere and anytime. The app is currently available for iPhone and Android phones.
"We heard from doctors and nurses that many of the calls they receive from patients have at root an emotional need," said Bob Quinn, 22otters CEO, "and we believe that the technology platform we built could help meet that need and provide real value enabling patients to assist and support one another."
In HerStory, members can hear personal tips from people who have gone through the challenges they are facing, and they can record their own stories to help others. Members can hear the different experiences, both physical and psychological, of women who've elected reconstruction vs. those who have not, or hear how other women have coped with relationships after surgery. The HerStory community provides supportive stories spanning all topics from the highly practical to the highly emotional.
A HerStory member who wished to remain anonymous shared, "When thinking about mastectomy, even though I don't have cancer yet, just the gene, I went online- but there is no other place to get some of these questions answered. Using HerStory I can hear what other women like me have been through."
To help make HerStory a safe place, the 22otters team of health education specialists, physicians and breast cancer survivors review all submitted stories. In addition, users who prefer added anonymity can request that their stories are re-recorded using one of our voice talents.
The 22otters team behind HerStory is on a quest to find the most helpful and compelling personal stories for people who are coping with health problems. To encourage story submissions, 22otters will donate to breast cancer non-profit organizations for each accepted story. HerStory depends on women sharing their stories, and 22otters is launching a social media campaign using traditional media, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to reach women and families that could benefit from the app. Users can search for HerStory in the Apple app store or Google play store.