Updated: Nov 15, 2022
*Note - Medsur Inc. has closed operations in 2021. We still love the message in this article and decided to keep it up!
Let's amplify people doing great things - especially in femtech ;) We sat down with a founder creating innovative feminine products and we wanted to share that conversation.
Sammie Hasen is the Founder and CEO of Medsur Inc., a femtech start-up based in Atlanta, GA. Sammie originally founded medsur as a college student and has continued to grow her company since graduating from Georgia Institute of Technology. She combines her passion for consumer-driven design with her practical work experience in the financial sector to innovate products by uterus owners, for uterus owners.
Please tell us how Medsur came to be about:
During my sophomore year at Georgia Institute of Technology, I noticed there was a lack of research and focus on feminine product innovation. I came up with an idea to reduce the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome in tampon use, and I partnered with a lab to test it. This was when I found my passion for the femtech space, and since that moment, the ideas have been flowing. I shifted the focus to reducing leakage in tampons rather than the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome, and then I founded medsur with that product in mind. Although the FDA process for that product would’ve been a bit too involved for a college student, I continued to look for similar problems in my daily life. In May of 2020, I noticed my friends constantly forgetting to take their birth control pills because they didn’t have their pills on them when their alarm went off. I wanted to create a solution to help my friends remember to take their pills, so that is just what I did! I created BCase, a first-of-its-kind birth control pill case that attaches directly to the back of your phone. Medsur is designed to house a portfolio of femtech products, and BCase is just the start.
What’s your mission with Medsur? What values do you want Medsur to represent:
My mission with medsur is to create a suite of innovative products for uterus owners that increase the functionality and usability of what is on the market today. Medsur focuses on creating inclusive products for all uterus owners to make their everyday lives easier. We do that by having a team of uterus owners that are users of the product themselves. We knew the best way to innovate femtech products is by having the designer in the users shoes. Medsur ensures a user is touching the product every step of the way from ideation all the way to launch.
What do you see lacking in the femtech space:
We believe the biggest area of improvement in the femtech space is access to research and data that inspires innovation. For example, the mechanisms behind tampon leakage are best understood through the Syngina Method. The Syngina Method is a machine simulating the flow of menses into a tampon as close to the actual biological process as possible. This method requires a piece of equipment that is very expensive and hard to find. Due to that lack of accessibility, startups can’t understand the mechanisms behind menses flow in order to innovate the product. Large companies that have access are unwilling to share their data, so this creates a big gap in opportunities for innovation.
What has been the biggest learning experience about the Medsur journey so far:
The biggest learning experience we’ve had so far is seeing how crucial it is to take your time and listen to your customers. When you’re running a start-up, you’re so close to the product that sometimes it’s harder to step back and see the bigger picture. It is so crucial to take a beat and truly listen to what your customers need because that’s the only way to succeed in the consumer products space. Once you listen to your customers, it’s important to use that feedback as a foundation for each of the phases of customer discovery as you continue building the product. Never leave your customers in the dark because you need them every step of the way!
What message would you want to share with this community:
I want to share with this community the importance of taking your birth control pills consistently. The effectiveness of your pills drastically decreases when they aren’t taken in a consistent manner. With perfect use they can be up to 99% effective, but when taken at different times of the day or missing pills entirely, this goes down to only 91%. BCase was created to help uterus owners remember to take their pills consistently by ensuring their phone alarm and birth control pills are always in the same place.