August 9, 2022

Estelle Giraud

Topic
Healthcare

Estelle Giraud: 

Women’s health has been not served well for the longest time, we need to have the capabilities, the tools, that we can manage our own health.

Announcer:

Welcome to Agency for Change, a podcast from KidGlov that brings you the stories of changemakers who are actively working to improve our communities. In every episode, we’ll meet with people who are making a lasting impact in the places we call home.

Lyn Wineman:

There are so many industries that tech has helped revolutionize. Off the top of my head, I’m thinking about companies like Netflix, which changed how we interact with movies and television, or Amazon, which changed the way we shop for goods in the middle of the night with wine, for example, and even companies like Uber and Lyft changed the experience of hailing a ride.

Lyn Wineman:

But healthcare, healthcare has always been a tough nut to crack. Consumers have to navigate a winding maze of providers, each with their own mobile apps, processes and logins. I can’t even imagine how those who are pregnant or recently pregnant juggle the multiple appointments needed for themselves or probably the several members of their family they’re taking care of, and they balance that with the demands of their work and their home lives. But fortunately, someone is out there thinking about how to solve these problems for these individuals, and we’re going to hear from that person today. So stick with us as we find out more about the company trying to simplify healthcare for mothers, how their approach is different from anything else that’s out there, and where you can find out more about them.

Lyn Wineman:

Hey, everyone. This is Lyn Wineman, president and chief strategist at KidGlov. Welcome to another episode of the Agency for Change Podcast. And today’s guest is Estelle Giraud, co-founder and CEO of Trellis Health, which is making pregnancy health more seamless, supported, data-driven and personal. Estelle, welcome to the podcast.

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. Thanks, Lyn. It’s great to be here.

Lyn Wineman:

I can’t wait to talk to you because you are doing something so interesting that’s going to help so many people. Can you start by telling our listeners about Trellis Health and the work that you do?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah, absolutely. So Trellis Health, our mission is to empower people to really see and then connect with their health. And I think this is something that a lot of people, you don’t have that real concrete relationship with your own body, and it’s very difficult to develop that, and part of that is problems with the industry, but just the way that our brains work. And so Trellis Health is building software and digital tools that allow specifically to start with pregnant women to really see and connect with their bodies and that health journey through pregnancy.

Estelle Giraud:

Really quickly, my background is in academia and biotech. I spent over a decade really on the front line of medicine and healthcare throughout Australia and Asia and the US. I see the revolution that’s happening in medicine today with data. Medicine used to be this really observational science and you had one practitioner, you had a general practitioner that maybe even saw your family for generations, and so had all of that knowledge just in their head. And fast forward to today, we have wearables. We have genetic testing. People are super mobile. You’re kind of all over the place. And so your footprint for your health is really all over the place as well, and that means that (a) you can’t really get a lot of benefit from that information and (b) your provider doesn’t either. And so layered into this, the third piece really is…I went through my own journey in pregnancy and I was already very passionate about this space. And then I was pregnant and I was like, oh my God, first child. This is not what I signed up for.

Lyn Wineman:

Oh, right? And you want to, you want to do everything right, and yet your body is changing. Your brain is changing. Your life is changing, and you just want to know what’s going on, right?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. Yeah. And the responsibility for you self-educating and managing your health. And many, many pregnancy complications are not rare complications: gestational diabetes, hypertension. Kind of some of these things we want to, as people, be able to live the healthiest life that we can. And especially through pregnancy, that urge becomes really acute, and it did for me. And so Trellis Health really exists at the intersection of all of these pieces. So health medicine is dramatically changing. How do we make sure that that’s done for the best? There is huge opportunity in women’s health and pregnancy to improve that experience and how do we just help people really see and connect with that at a personal, at a psychological level.

Lyn Wineman:

I love that. Estelle, it is fascinating because you said something earlier about how learning about our own health is it isn’t easy and it’s weird because our brains and our bodies are connected our whole lives, but yet we don’t really know what’s going on in there. So I’m really curious. You’ve been a mother. You’ve lived. You’ve worked. You’ve studied. You’ve taught all over the world. You mentioned a lot of these experiences. How did these experiences bring you a step closer to co-founding Trellis Health?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. So two things with this one. The first is really a sense of courage, and this is important for, I mean, any entrepreneur, anybody that’s kind of trying to do something new and forged their own path. And it’s also incredibly true of motherhood.

Lyn Wineman:

For sure. A hundred percent. The original entrepreneurship, I think, is motherhood. Right?

Estelle Giraud:

I agree. Yes. I mean, there are just huge parallels. But I’ve taken big leaps of courage as I’ve moved in different cities. I moved across the country in Australia when I was fairly young, and I moved to a completely new place, didn’t know anybody, shifted my career, kind of everything all at the same time. And putting yourself in those kind of uncomfortable positions feels incredibly scary, but in hindsight, it really has… Every time I’ve pushed myself, it’s been a good outcome, regardless of the mess in between. In hindsight, long-term hindsight, it’s just been the right… It’s been nourishing and full of growth and opportunity. And so living a very mobile life and going through kind of big transitions and big swings in my career definitely gives me a sense of power and kind of courage in being able to do what… What I’m trying to do here is not small. And then the other thing that I’ll say is this sense of mobility is something that I struggled with. My health data is globally all over the place.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah. Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

And something that I felt in… So I was pregnant during the pandemic in early 2020.

Lyn Wineman:

I can’t imagine what that would have been like. I mean, pregnancy is stressful enough and then you do it during a pandemic where everything is just weird and scary. Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. Yeah. It wasn’t how I would choose to do it, but it also… We went into lockdown. We didn’t leave the house. I didn’t go anywhere. And I saw colleagues and friends would up and leave and have these kind of digital nomad experiences. They would go and live in another city for a few months. And I felt like I couldn’t do that because I was pregnant, and I needed to have this very close, anchored roots in a place. And since then, I’ve spoken to people that have tried to do that when they’re pregnant and face challenges with that, but I’m like, why not? Why can’t we be more mobile as a society? I don’t think this is going completely back to the way it was before, and so we need systems and software and healthcare management systems that enable that lifestyle and where health doesn’t suffer because of that.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah. Wow. That is-

Estelle Giraud:

Sorry. That’s a lot to that question.

Lyn Wineman:

I like it though. I like it. I never really even thought about having a mobile lifestyle while you’re pregnant, right, because you do, you have all of the appointments and everything’s with your doctor. And you mentioned that the generational family doctor, Estelle, I may be one of the last ones, but my family doctor cares for my parents. He also cared for my grandparents, and now, one of my kids sees him as well. And so four generations. But when you become… And he knows a lot. He knows-

Estelle Giraud:

That’s amazing.

Lyn Wineman:

… probably way too much about all of us. But that’s just not practical. It’s not practical anymore. Most families don’t live that closely together and have that experience.

Lyn Wineman:

All right. So I can understand how your experience of being a mother impacted you to develop this company and the software. I’m curious, did it happen in reverse? Did your experience of being a founder impact the way you approach motherhood? And if so, how did it? What happened in that regard?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. And I love this topic, right? I feel like we could do a whole podcast just on digging into some of these parallels. And it’s not just a motherhood thing. I do want to say that I think it’s powerful across anything that we are doing in our lives, if we show up as a whole person and all the facets of that, and you bring that to a work environment or you bring the relationships and the insights, and if you’re passionate about your work to other aspects of how you manage outside of that, like showing up as a whole person, is incredibly rewarding. And so for me, definitely, I went through this kind of founding a company and trying to build something from nothing in parallel with going through pregnancy, and it was like, I was growing two things at the same time, physically and metaphorically.

Lyn Wineman:

Absolutely. Absolutely.

Estelle Giraud:

And so they just fed off each other, and I started seeing all of these parallels. But I mean, one thing that I want to touch on in terms of motherhood and what it taught me about being a founder and being an entrepreneur is, and I mentioned it briefly before, but this notion of being comfortable with being uncomfortable. I felt my body, I would wake up in the morning, and I always had really strong stomach muscles, but I could feel my muscles in pain, like stretching, which is profoundly uncomfortable. And then I also had really bad morning sickness, and your whole body is just reminding you how physically uncomfortable you feel on a daily basis. I just got really comfortable with that. I was like, well, I’m awake now, and I feel really uncomfortable, and it’s not going to get better, so I may as well just get on with it. And-

Lyn Wineman:

I love that.

Estelle Giraud:

But that’s being a founder, right? You wake up every morning uncomfortable, or doing something new or something you haven’t done before, and if you just get comfortable with that, some of the fear goes away, and you’re just like, okay, well, I’ll just get on with it.

Lyn Wineman:

I’ll just get on with it. I’m going to do something today I’ve never done before. I’m really nervous about it, but what the heck, no one else is going to do it. Right? I got to go do it. Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

Right. And when you’re pregnant, you don’t actually have a choice about it. You just have to.

Lyn Wineman:

That’s right. I can’t say, “Oh, sorry, turn change my mind. Stop stretching, muscles.” Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

Right. Stop stretching, muscles. It’s like, yeah. But the other way around, so being a founder and existing in that kind of head space and what that does for how I parent, I also think it’s multifaceted. Right? So it’s like, I… And this is even before I found out this was in my commercial life as well, this idea of build, buy, partner. So do you build something yourself? Do you buy a solution off the shelf from somebody else? Or do you partner with somebody to get the outcome that you want? So it’s like a corporate development, business development psychology, and you have to be really rigorous about what you build yourself because there’s finite resources and finite time, and you have to be efficient.

Estelle Giraud:

And so with how I parent, I just can’t do it all. I can’t so I have to prioritize what I’m building myself and how I spend that time and pick the activities that really bring me and my son a lot of joy and then be totally okay with buying or partnering or outsourcing elements that I have actively chosen not to do, and that’s okay. I don’t have to do it all myself. I think women put a lot of pressure on themselves to kind of do it all, and it does take a village, and it takes a team. And a company is not me. It’s not one person. It’s a team of people making strategic decisions about what we build and how we accomplish a goal. And in my family, I have to be rigorous about that as well.

Lyn Wineman:

I love that, Estelle. I founded KidGlov when my kids were in middle school and high school, and one thing I didn’t expect from that experience is they observed their mother exhibiting courage, as you mentioned, and doing things I’d never done before and putting myself out there. And I think it’s had an effect on them, making them more courageous and willing to stand-

Estelle Giraud:

Hundred percent.

Lyn Wineman:

… up. And I think even it’s helped them in their own early… They’re all in their own early careers, but understanding the inner workings of a business, which has made them better in their own careers as well. But I think you don’t separate work and family. And especially now, since the pandemic, when most of us are working from home, and our families might be right there with us. Right?

Estelle Giraud:

Right.

Lyn Wineman:

And and founding something is a family experience as well.

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. Yeah.

Lyn Wineman:

So Estelle, you are in the combination of two industries that have the reputation of being tough industries. And I’m curious what kind of challenges you may be faced as a female entrepreneur in the healthcare and the tech spaces and what you did to overcome those challenges.

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. I feel like we could do a whole another podcast on this as well.

Lyn Wineman:

Right. Right. I think we’d have a lot of fun too. I really am enjoying talking with you. So we could just do a whole month-long series with Lyn and Estelle.

Estelle Giraud:

So I have my own personal experience right through this, and I want to acknowledge that not everybody’s experience looks like mine. But one thing that I did… Well, firstly, I will say a fraction of venture dollars goes towards female founders, and that 100% has to change. And I think that changes across all the levels. So it’s not just that we need more money and more dollars going to female founders and female tech founders as well. That’s, I think, even less percentage. But we need more female GPs. We need form more female VCs. And for anybody that’s less familiar, right, the VCs manage money from their LPs, which are the wealthy individuals or institutions that are kind of giving that money as an investment to the VCs to manage. There are so little female LPs.

Estelle Giraud:

So at the very top of the chain all the way down, we have to have representation for women in order for this to change. And some of the ways that that manifests is, they’ve done these studies, and I have certainly felt this, men are judged primarily on potential, what could they accomplish. And it’s very forward looking, and it’s very, kind of optimistic, and it’s like, oh, you’ll deal with the risks. You’ll deal with all the problems. How big could this be? And women tend to get judged based on prior performance. So what have you done? And it’s a different psychology. So how have you de-risked all of this? How are you going to deal with all of these problems? Show us evidence where you’ve dealt with this before. And it limits the amount of high-risk ventures that women can found because the psychological framework for how they’re judged is different. So that needs to change.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah. Good one. That’s good. Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

And the other thing that I’ll say is just role models. I mean, this is related, right, to the other thing, but something that I struggled with, particularly when I was pregnant, was this idea of where is the pregnancy or founding a tech company role model? Who is that? Am I doing something-

Lyn Wineman:

It’s you, Estelle. You are it. You are it, and that’s why I’m glad we’re doing this podcast.

Estelle Giraud:

And it was hard. I searched and remember spending hours on Google just trying to find these female role models, and I ended up fixating on people like Jacinda Ardern, who’s the prime minister of New Zealand and was pregnant in office. The first female prime minister of the country leading a country, and she was unapologetic about the fact that she was pregnant. She was like, “Yes, I-“

Lyn Wineman:

I love her by the way. She’s a great role model for a lot of reasons. Yes.

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. But I think it’s important that more women, if they… and it’s so hard to do. I did this as well – I wasn’t vocal about my pregnancy while I was leading and while I was having these conversations. I’m more so now, and if I am ever pregnant again, I commit to changing that narrative. But just being more vocal about that and showing other women that you can do that. Not you don’t have to do that, but you can do that.

Lyn Wineman:

That’s fantastic. Thank you for being a role model in that regard. So you have with your software, Estelle… I’m taking this back to product again, although I love talking about your life and your experiences. You chose to base the product on pre and postnatal health. There’s so many, so many areas, but what went into that decision to focus on this specific area of health for your company?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. So we’ve touched on it a little bit already, but I do want to, just from the outset, highlight that I had personal experience in this journey, and it was shocking from a patient experience, consumer experience. And I loved my care team, nothing against my care team, but the amount of responsibility that you take as a woman managing that healthcare journey is not to be underestimated. And there was very little digital tools to really help me kind of manage that health. And like I was saying a little bit before the show, your health journey doesn’t start and stop when you enter and leave your doctor’s office.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

And so pregnancy, I just saw this opportunity for kind of what we call continuity of care, but providing that layer of support for a woman in between those doctors’ visits and really just giving her simple digital tools to manage that health journey and whether that’s a conditional or not. And it also extends into postpartum as well, that kind of fourth trimester experience.

Estelle Giraud:

But beyond just experiencing that myself, we are building a personal health record company, and this is not a new idea. This is the holy grail of healthcare and has been everybody from Google to Apple, everybody is trying to kind of crack this nut.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

And I believe that pregnancy and women’s health is just a completely overlooked entry point because the founders of these companies haven’t had that experience. And the challenge when you’re building a startup is you need an incredible focus. You need to be able to build a product around a solution with not a lot of capital. And you also need, from a consumer standpoint, you need a person who’s motivated for their health. And so typically these have kind of focused on really sick, people struggling with very debilitating or horrible diseases, like cancer or rare undiagnosed diseases, which is great, but by the time somebody has cancer, it’s almost too late.

Lyn Wineman:

It’s too late. Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

Wouldn’t you want decades worth of your personal health data to really serve you, if later in life you had cancer? And rare disease is, by definition, kind of rare. You’re building a product for… Everybody’s product looks different. And so pregnancy is an opportunity to build a product around a really standardized kind of biological process. It’s 40 weeks long. We know what that looks like, and we have the medical structure around that journey. And ultimately, part of our vision is to turn that into a family health record, so that child then-

Lyn Wineman:

Makes a lot of sense.

Estelle Giraud:

… gets records built from birth to serve them for the rest of their life.

Lyn Wineman:

I think, too, that point in time with pregnancy, it’s one thing to be responsible for your own health, right? We all know we should probably eat better. We should maybe drink less alcohol. We should maybe do more exercise. We all know that, but then when it comes to you’re creating another human inside of you and you’re caring for a child and a family, I think that wakes you up to a level where you care more. You really want to do the right things. So I love that your company is jumping in at that part of the journey where it can really make a big impact moving forward for a lot of people.

Lyn Wineman:

So I’m curious then what does the ideal experience look like for a mother who comes across Trellis Health? I mean, what value do you bring to that mother and that growing family?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. So we’ve spoken about it a little bit already, but just to reiterate, we are consumer-first. So we have a direct-to-consumer model. There is no need to kind of work through your specific OB-GYN, or are we covering your hospital or not? So people, anybody who is pregnant can sign up for our platform. The other thing that I’ll say just off the bat is that we are consumer-paid. So it’s consumer-paid software. It’s $99 a year, and the idea-

Lyn Wineman:

$99 a year, that is hardly anything. That is one pair of shoes.

Estelle Giraud:

Yes, yes. But the idea there is that we’re not trying to monetize in any other way. So we are not selling data on the back end. This is the most personal information you have, and we respect that, and we really want to be transparent about this is the way that we make money as a company. Healthcare is not known for being really transparent, and you’ve got very complex business models. So we are direct-to-consumer.

Estelle Giraud:

And so a person would be able to discover us, download our app, sign up. They go through an onboarding process. And this is not as simple as name, password, right, but we like to think of it as a self-care process. So dedicating 15 minutes to really sit down and kind of go through this. You’re building a legacy for your health and your family’s health from then on. But through that onboarding process, we are then able to go and automatically, on the back end with software, kind of collect all of the health information from your history, and that effortlessly comes into your dashboard and your account at your fingertips.

Estelle Giraud:

And then layered on top of that, going back to our mission, really enabling people to see and connect with their health. Knowing that it’s all there is one thing, but then being able to summarize it in tracking dashboards. So if you have to measure blood pressure, we push notifications to your reminders, time to measure your blood pressure. You can input it directly in the app. It goes to a summary, a graph. It’ll be ready for you and summarized for your next doctor’s appointment, almost like a one-pager.

Estelle Giraud:

So I’m going back to corporate, but if you’re in a meeting and you’ve got 10 minutes and you have to be really efficient, you want to have all your information organized and ready to have a good productive conversation. And so empowering patients to have all of that information really kind of tracked between visits, but then summarized and ready to take into their doctor’s appointment, enables them to just be better advocates for their health, and the doctors then to practice at the top of their license and really connect with their patients and have that insight into what’s happening between those weekly visits.

Lyn Wineman:

Wow. I could even see, because we always keep hearing how there’s so much pressure on your doctor to make the appointment happen fast. They need to handle a lot of patients. And if they come in and you can’t think of your data or your question, or you can’t pull it together, then the doctor’s going to either have to take more time with you or make a decision. And so I could see where it would really aid the doctor too. You come in. You’re ready to go. You’ve collected your data. You share your data. You ask your questions and move on. That’s really cool.

Lyn Wineman:

So since we’re talking about data though, right, I don’t know that there’s hardly any other field where there’s so much restriction around handling data in the United States, other than healthcare, but yet, wow, the benefit of having it altogether on your phone is amazing. And so I’m just curious, how are you tackling this issue of data security in this way?

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. So a couple of things. One is I completely agree with you. There are a lot of problems in healthcare, but this one in particular feels enormous to me. And it goes back to the pieces of legislation, all the way back to kind of HIPAA legislation, where the P in HIPAA is portability, not privacy. And it’s been usurped. That piece of legislation has been kind of funneled into this way of locking up the data under the guise of kind of privacy, which is really important, but it should be about portability. And the patient really does need to be at the center of that, and the patients were not crafted into HIPAA in that language, maybe in the correct way early on, because people were not able to see functionally how that would work in the healthcare system that we have.

Estelle Giraud:

And so the side effect of a lot of that and the same thing with kind of the push for electronic medical records and the pieces of legislation that led to companies like Epic and others really having a huge presence in this industry, these systems were not built for being able to do kind of population health management. They were not built to be able to do kind of longitudinal patient-centric analysis of health. They’re really built for a different purpose.

Estelle Giraud:

And what’s ironic is that privacy suffers because of that, because what happens today is a lot of this health data is taken out of the system anonymized and then analyzed in a third-party or different system, and patients don’t realize this. Your data is being bought and sold and used on all sorts of secondary and tertiary markets for health data because the industry kind of needs that data to be able to move forward, so things like public health or pharmaceutical research, or whatever it is, but we need to think about a complete kind of reversal of how we do that medical research and handle population scale data, and really do put the person back in the center of that, because then they can control and consent to privacy, or it’s not being done without your knowledge. I mean, this is getting pretty technical, but it’s a huge problem that I see kind of, it’s an inflection point in our health industry today, but it’s not a positive inflection point. It’s like, it’s getting exponentially worse. And at some point, we will need a different system or healthcare will suffer.

Lyn Wineman:

Estelle, I’m glad that people like you are looking out after this. I mean, I don’t know how many times any of us have been to our doctor’s office. You’re checking in. They stick the HIPAA paperwork in front of you. And they’re like, “Do you want us to read it to you?” And you’re like, “No, no, no, I’ll just sign it. It doesn’t matter.” Right? It just doesn’t matter. I just will sign it. How many times have I signed it without really having any idea? And if I chose not to sign it, what would happen? I don’t really have a choice whether I sign it or not. So it’s kind of like-

Estelle Giraud:

A privacy is critical to what we are doing, and consent goes hand in hand with that. I really reject this idea that people have to choose between convenience and privacy. We’re so trained to just sign all these policies because I need to do this or it’s convenient, or I don’t want to take the time to do this, but why do we have to always choose between privacy and convenience? Don’t we deserve both?

Lyn Wineman:

Oh, we absolutely deserve both. We absolutely deserve both. So, all right, Estelle, a few more questions for you here. I’m just really loving this conversation. It’s really making me think about the different healthcare experiences that I have, but I know as you talk about your product and your software, you talk about a tailored healthcare approach. And I’m curious. I think I know what that means, but could you just talk more about what that looks like and why is that better than the way care is handled today?

Estelle Giraud:

So this comes, I mean, this is something that’s been a thread throughout my entire career, this notion in medicine of precision medicine or personalized medicine. A lot of our medical system is based on the average person, and I would challenge most people to find an average pregnancy. What does that look like?

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

We all have different prior conditions, different health concerns, different lifestyles, different goals for our pregnancy, and what’s important to us. And so it’s really about pregnancy making sure that experience is really, truly tailored to your health, your data, your goals in a really kind of personalized way, but then more broadly for medicine in general, right? We need to be able to move towards this goal post of end of one medicine… Your medicine, the way that you’re treated, the prescriptions that you have, the conversations with your doctor, your care plans are tailored to you and your health and not fitting in some model of the standard of care for an average person that may not look exactly like you.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah. Wow. I love the whole idea of that. So Estelle, you are running a private beta experience, I understand, for pregnant women that are due between now and the end of 2022. If we have listeners that are listening today and fall into that group, how can they experience Trellis Health for themselves?

Estelle Giraud:

We would love to have women that are pregnant to sign up. It says private, but really that just means that it’s not completely open. We’re not advertising this specifically. We really want to get people that care about our mission and our vision, and want to be a part of that early testing of our product. The easiest way to do that is to go online to our website. We have a page dedicated to beta sign up, and there’s a very short form that people can fill out there, and the only requirement really is that they are due between, I think it’s September and December this year. And those women that really partner with us in this early beta testing, we’re giving them free access for life to the platform, so really, as a thank you for working with us on this mission. Yeah. Like I say, we’re still open and would love to connect with women who are pregnant.

Lyn Wineman:

That’s fantastic. Estelle, we have grabbed that link off your website, and we are going to have that in the show notes. So anybody who wants to go to that, it will be right online with the show notes here.

Lyn Wineman:

So you are tackling such big things, such big things. So let’s say tomorrow, you decided to tackle the next big issue with healthcare in America. What would it be and how would you solve it? That’s not a difficult question at all. Is that a fair question? Maybe that’s not even a fair question. You seem like very smart and very intuitive. I believe you have got… I believe our future is in good hands with people like you, Estelle.

Estelle Giraud:

Thank you. There are pioneers across this industry really working to make healthcare, and particularly in the US, better. I would say Trellis definitely has a two-step goal and a two-step strategy. So we’re starting with pregnancy and very focused around pregnancy, but ultimately, we believe that this is beneficial and relevant to everybody. So we really want to be able to expand out to families, to communities, to really kind of put that framework, that architecture in place for a different kind of health data system.

Estelle Giraud:

If I’m going to think something completely different, I would say the thing that shocked me about the US healthcare system, coming from Australia, is the layers and the lack of transparency between the layer. So you’ve got, in most systems, maybe three layers, a provider and a payer and then a government kind of a body. And in the US, you’ve got seven or eight layers there, and at every layer, profit is being made because it’s a for-profit healthcare system. And so I think breaking up some of those layers with the benefits managers and the pharmacy benefit managers and the employers and the way that the economics of this system function is not sustainable.

Lyn Wineman:

Yeah. Yeah.

Estelle Giraud:

But I’m not tackling that problem.

Lyn Wineman:

Oh, dang it. I was hoping you would tackle that one for the rest of us. So that’s a big one. All right. So this has been such a fun conversation, and everybody who listens to Agency for Change knows that, Estelle, I am inspired by motivational quotes. And I am wondering if you could give us a few of your own words of wisdom to inspire our listeners.

Estelle Giraud:

Yeah. So I have a couple, and some of these are old, very old, but they keep resonating with me. So one was going back to my pregnancy journey in the early, early days of trying to start a company, is “This too shall pass.” And it’s this reminder that nothing is constant in our lives, and that’s good and bad. And so it’s a reminder in the good times to really kind of cherish those. With my son, he was a baby, and it was in those really adorable moments. This too shall pass. This will disappear. But then in the really hard, on the really hard days, this too shall pass.

Estelle Giraud:

And then the other one that’s related to that I keep coming back to is: “Starve the ego, feed the soul.” So being a founder is a journey with impossibly high highs and these really deep lows. And in both of those scenarios, it’s a reminder to do things, to recognize when something is ego-driven, because we all… I have an ego. I wouldn’t do this otherwise.

Lyn Wineman:

Right.

Estelle Giraud:

But trying to really recognize when it’s an ego that’s being fed and stopping that feeding cycle and going and doing something instead that nourishes your soul, so that’s getting out in nature or going for a walk or writing gratitude for other people, or whatever that is something that feeds your soul instead.

Lyn Wineman:

That’s beautiful. Both of those are beautiful. Thank you for that.

Lyn Wineman:

So for our listeners who would like to learn more about your work, what’s going on at Trellis Health, how can they find out more?

Estelle Giraud:

So they can follow us on social media. We’re still very early in this journey, and we’ll be ramping particularly around when we’re ready to launch our product, but we are My Trellis Health on almost all social media platforms. We would love to have people follow along for the journey. And then I’m also on social media as well on Twitter and LinkedIn, if they want to connect.

Lyn Wineman:

Sounds great. So that’s My Trellis Health or Estelle Giraud, and we’ll have links to both of those in the show notes as well.

Lyn Wineman:

So Estelle, I know, I feel like you and I could do a whole series. We joked about it earlier. I’ve so enjoyed this conversation. As we wrap up our time together today, what is the most important thing you would like our listeners to remember about the work that you’re doing?

Estelle Giraud:

This one is important to me, and it’s really this idea that women’s health has been not served well for the longest time. Women have not had solutions made by them or really for them. And we need to have the capabilities. We need to have the tools being built that we can manage our own health and our own destiny through that.

Estelle Giraud:

Women make 80 plus percent of consumer-buying decisions, and 70 plus percent of all medical decisions for a family. We are the chief medical offices of the family and really anchor points within our families and within our communities. And we need to have, we need to demand and put that power behind solutions that are going to craft a future that incorporates women’s needs and women’s health and women’s advocacy for our own bodies.

Lyn Wineman:

Estelle, that’s such a great point and bringing this all full circle. I love how the work that you’re doing at Trellis Health is helping to aid in that issue. So thank you for that. And I just want to say, I fully believe the world needs more people like you doing this hard work, this smart work, and thank you for taking the time to share with us today.

Estelle Giraud:

Thank you so much. I’ve loved this conversation. Thanks.

Announcer:

We hope you enjoyed today’s Agency for Change podcast. To hear all our interviews with those who are making a positive change in our communities, or to nominate a changemaker you’d love to hear from, visit KidGlov.com at K-I-D-G-L-O-V.com to get in touch. As always, if you like what you’ve heard today, be sure to rate, review, subscribe, and share. Thanks for listening, and we’ll see you next time.

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