The digital health solutions Ask Tanu chatbot aims to empower women by addressing misinformation on endometriosis and contraception.
Federation of Obstetric & Gynaecological Societies of India (FOGSI) and Bayer Zydus Pharma Pvt. Ltd. announced their collaboration to drive increased adoption of the chatbot service ‘Ask Tanu’. This digital technology launched on the eve of World Contraception Day, September 26 will enable more women nationwide to seek credible and scientifically accurate health information and make informed choices about their sexual and reproductive health.
FOGSI’s professional network of over 500 gynecologists and obstetricians will raise awareness of ‘Ask Tanu’ nationwide as a credible source of women’s health information. The chatbot will provide 24/7 support, providing women with easier access to reliable health information and education in relation to contraception.
Commenting on digital technology as a means of fulfilling an unmet need for health information for Indian women, Dr. Shobha Gudi, Chairperson of Family Welfare Committee, FOGSI said, “Many women are putting off face-to-face medical consultations for seeking professional advice due to fear of contracting the virus. There are of course other contributing factors such as non-availability of clinical services and lack of transportation. But even prior to the pandemic, there was a huge gap in accessing family planning and contraceptive information. Data from our 4th National Family Health Survey (NFHS) clearly shows that few healthcare workers were speaking about family planning to women who were non-users, and amongst the users, only a few women were informed of the potential advantages and disadvantages of various contraceptive methods. Even though the family planning program in India is long-established, there is still significant reticence associated with contraception and women hesitate to talk about it. Chatbot services such as ‘Ask Tanu’ can help fill knowledge gaps and enable and empower women with trusted information from verified sources, so they can make informed choices.”
This World Contraception Day, healthcare professionals, policymakers, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and women influencers in the Asia Pacific also rally together to call for women to prioritize their health and their family planning needs, even during the pandemic.
With COVID-19 posing an urgent threat to women’s health and ability to plan their families, Bayer as launched the #HerHero campaign to support women in taking action to prioritize their health and take charge of their lives. Women’s influencers and representatives from key organizations in the Asia Pacific came together today at the #HerHero Virtual Forum, organized by Bayer in collaboration with the Population Council and other partners, and jointly pledged their commitment to being ‘HerHeroes’, those who support and empower women in their communities to help them make informed choices. They also called for wider public support to join in the pledge and give voice to women’s health needs and empowerment.
“Despite the progress made in empowering women’s lives over the last 60 years, barriers still exist today, made worse by the current pandemic. ‘Ask Tanu’ was designed to overcome such barriers, and we are proud to collaborate with FOGSI to increase the reach and impact of this digital solution so that more women can seek and benefit from this reliable source of information. Moreover, in India and across the Asia Pacific region, this day also marks the launch of Bayer’s #HerHero campaign, which rallies key stakeholders and women’s influencers to call for a wider support network of everyday heroes to champion and help women prioritize their health and their family planning needs, even during the pandemic,” said Manoj Saxena, Managing Director Bayer Zydus Pharma & South Asia Head at Bayer.