Remote physical therapy provider Hinge Health announced Wednesday a new program focused on improving access to pelvic physical therapy for women, designed by a team of women.
The women’s pelvic health program is meant to help address common pelvic floor disorders such as pelvic organ prolapse and incontinence.
One in four women have a pelvic floor disorder and experience urinary incontinence at some point. Karen Stander, VP of physical therapy at Hinge Health, says the company began developing the pelvic health program when she was expecting her second child. The pelvic health offering is designed to improve access to care that isn’t always readily accessible.
“I advocated to ask for a pelvic health referral for my OBGYN after I had my daughter, and it still took me months to find someone, and I live in the San Francisco area,” Stander says, adding that Hinge Health’s offering can be used by people regardless of geography nationwide and in U.S. territories.
Hinge’s pelvic health program pairs a user with a team that includes a pelvic floor physical therapist to assess needs and develop a personalized set of digital exercises, a health coach who can discuss lifestyle changes to support the exercise plan, and urogynecologists who can get involved if a member’s case needs to be escalated.
Brynn Bannach, a regional VP of sales at Hinge Health, is also a member of the pelvic health program. A mother of two, she says hip pain came along with her second child, as well as other pelvic health issues. She sees big potential in the new program.
“I have enough mom friends to know how common this is, and how little time we really all have to seek out care through traditional means,” she says. “And then you add the stigma, the embarrassment that comes with it, the fact that we’re here today talking about this is huge. That there’s a way that we can finally deliver this type of care virtually is really game-changing and I’m excited.”
The idea is for the treatment plans to be easily incorporated into a busy schedule, and to coexist along with any other treatments a member may be receiving from Hinge Health (which was named among Fast Company‘s 10 Most Innovative Medicines and Therapeutics Companies of 2022).
“We’ve created this as an additional pathway in our program so that a member get treatment with their lower back pain in addition to pelvic floor pain,” Stander says. “We weave in this pelvic health education across our digital clinic offering to really make sure that . . . we can proactively offer this education.”