An app that delivers birth control directly to people’s doors became available in Washington last week. The app, called Nurx, is also available in New York and California. The company’s CEO Hans Gangeskar says the app was designed to address the common barriers accessing birth control.
Here’s how it works: To start receiving birth control, users first enter insurance information and their address. Based on their insurance, one of Nurx’s partner doctors can write a prescription, and then a three-month supply of the birth control covered by their insurance plan will be delivered to their door. Using the app is free if you have insurance, and those without pay $15 per month.
“We realized that we wanted it to be a one-stop place so you as a user don’t have to navigate between a doctor, a payer, a pharmacy benefit manager, insurance company and a pharmacy,” Gangeskar says.
Many of the nearly three million unintended pregnancies in the U.S. each year occur among lower income, “underprivileged people, people who live in areas where there aren’t many primary care doctors,” Gageskar notes. “People who may have two jobs so it’s very difficult for them to take time off during the middle of the day to go the doctor, or people on Medicaid who might have only one or two doctors who they can go to close to their house, and those doctors can often have a waiting period.”
Nurx is intended to make accessing birth control easier for this segment of the population.
Gageskar says the app can also help people who might not be comfortable going into a doctor’s office and talking about their sexual history.
And as far as Gageskar knows, Nurx is unique, with no direct competitors.
“There are a number of companies that provide telemedicine services, but they will just get you a script and leave you,” he said. “There’s no one who takes end to end responsibility for getting you a prescription, getting it paid for and getting it delivered.”