Back in 2017 entrepreneur Maree Beare began the idea to create the health and fitness app Wanngi, as a way for everyday people to store, manage, and view all of their health and wellness information.
“I tried to access my health record and the only option I could find was the government consumer portal. At that time, I realised that the eHealth record was only really accessible for clinicians and bureaucrats, so I set about making it accessible to people, giving them more control over their health information,” she said.
The recent launch of Wanngi was in response to the recent My Health Record initiative, as 2.5 million Australians opted out of this system, and were left with no means to track their personal health records.
Wanngi is now live, but the past two years definitely haven’t been easy for Wanngi or for Maree.“I have been involved in technology my whole career, so the challenges of a female founder in STEM is not new to me,” Beare explains. “I was warned by my husband, already in the digital health sector, that my startup endeavour would be difficult and he was correct. Also, unfortunately, female entrepreneurs are also less likely to receive backing and funding, even though they are statistically more likely to run more successful businesses. Having bootstrapped this startup, thus far, has also been a challenge for us as we have had a number of delays due to dependencies on Government approvals, and potential investors have required customer validation first.”
Wanngi is now set to see a range of new developments and updates to extend its functionality. “People can begin connecting their wearable devices and creating their own personal health record for the first time ever. We’re also ready to connect to the Australian My Health Record as soon as the Government approval process is complete,” Maree Beare said.
Now users can monitor their health records regardless of whether they’ve opted out of the Government record, and keep tabs on all of their health and wellness information in one location, including symptom and injury management, medications and immunisations.
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