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In the modern era we live in, sex can no longer be a taboo topic.
After a long period of sexual repression came a period of sexual revolution in the 1960s, which was particularly significant for affirming women’s sexual rights. Fast forward to the beginning of the 21st century and we’ll notice the first traces of the so-called “hookup culture” within college campuses. The change in sexual behavior has sparked controversy and triggered various different perspectives on the morality of such lifestyles, bringing labels such as promiscuity in focus.
But, is that really the whole story? Are younger generations such as Millennials really prone to no-strings-attached sexual behavior?
The issue has also been a subject of scientific research. A study published in the Journal of Sex Research in 2014 has addressed the topic and managed to debunk the myth of the hookup culture with real social data, proving that sexual practices of the new generations are not fundamentally different from the previous ones. Exceptions are being accounted as rules and media have recklessly spread the hype without taking much time to check the facts.
What has changed though, is the Western society’s attitude towards casual sex, which is not being judged upon as much as in the past. The only rule is mutual consent.
In such context, it is crucial for young people to educate themselves about what means to be responsible and how to protect their sexual health. In the US, around 20 million people between the ages of 15 and 24 get sexually transmitted diseases each year, which is very alarming.
The Safe Sex App (safeapp.me) is looking to solve this problem and promote the safe sex movement.
How the Safe Sex App Was Started
Shortly put, the Safe Sex App is designed to track and verify user’s sexual health.
It was made by the Los Angeles company Safe Group after Ken Mayer, now CEO and one of the founders thought about the necessity of complete honesty and transparency between two people who are planning to have sexual relations. At the time, Mayer was dating someone who demanded to see the results of a recent STD test before having sex. This was what triggered the idea for an app.
Wouldn’t it be convenient to simply show the person the records of STD tests on your phone? In addition, wouldn’t it be great to use our smartphones as allies in preserving sexual health?
Mayer knew he was onto something. He spoke to his partner about the idea and then he turned to his friend, Lauren Weiniger. After a while, Raj Jhaveri, chief technology officer joins the two so finally, in 2015 – the idea came to life.
According to CrunchBase, the company has raised a total of $1.8 million through seeding. However, the path to founding the company was not easy; here’s why.
Three founders had to go through several rounds of feasibility studies and overcome obstacles that come with asking for confidential patient medical records and ensuring sensitive information will not be compromised. Another challenge was to include licensed physicians, which has lead to establishing a national healthcare company called Safe Health (safehealth.me).
The results were great. The Safe Sex App now offers an integrated health care service with a widespread network of physicians who can order tests that are covered by insurance for the lowest costs. Given the fact it manages electronic medical records, the app is HIPAA compliant, meaning it respects the highest security standards required by the government.
About Safe Health, the Healthcare Company
Safe Health is actually a physician-owned company Safe Group brought together. The Safe Group holds the equity and acts as a holding company, responsible for developing the app and taking care of the tech side of the business.
The company also partnered with Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp in order to make STD testing accessible to anyone. The results get automatically uploaded within the app. In addition, the app allows users to fill in the form, upload and verify their results, regardless of whether or not they got tested through the Safe program.
Safe Health company ensured that those who have insurance pay only a co-pay, while those without insurance have to pay $99 for the complete six tests. With its virtual healthcare platform, the company looks to transform sexual healthcare practices by connecting patients, healthcare providers, and integrated lab services. Lab report assessments are also available, as well as virtual and in-person consultations.
Future plans include opening an online pharmacy that will help eradicate STDs by providing instant access and convenience to those who need treatment.
Benefits of the Safe Sex App
The Safe Sex App lets you privately show your STD status on the screen of your phone, check your partners, and get tested.
Within the app, you can find and book your test in over 75,000 locations across the US, or schedule an in-home testing. Test results then get imported from almost any physician, clinic or lab, so that you can show your status in complete privacy, over your phone.
Additional benefits include:
- High level of security and data protection (the app is HIPAA compliant)
- The convenience of getting tested (book testing at a nearby facility or have physicians come to your doorstep)
- Make the most of your insurance plan and get regularly tested
- In case you don’t have insurance, you can pay $99 for the full six-test panel
- Keep track of your sexual health and remember to get checked at least once a year
- Import your test results even if you did not get tested through the Safe Sex App program
The Safe Group is dedicated to raising awareness about just how serious the problem of STDs is. These diseases can cause serious health problems in the future, especially for women. Some can be treated with antibiotics, while others (like those caused by viruses) cannot be cured, but various medicines are incredibly helpful for keeping symptoms under control. Unfortunately, sexual relations are the main way of spreading HIV and AIDS. If detected early enough, HIV doesn’t have to be fatal, which is why testing is of paramount importance.
The Safe Group has established a program called Safe Ambassadors in an attempt to connect with students and faculties that are willing to participate by spreading the word and educating young people about reproductive health.
Unprotected sex is something that’s not that uncommon and this reckless approach towards health can leave serious consequences. We may not be at ease to talk about this topic openly, but that should not stop us from insisting on its importance. Of course, intimacy is something delicate and private. But being healthy and honest is also a shared responsibility and a sign of respect towards our partners.
We at .ME are proud to serve as an online home of such an important health cause and are excited to see how the Safe Group will continue to revolutionize healthcare and innovate using technology.