Forth helps you to be healthier, fitter, stronger by tracking your health on the inside. We do this by testing and tracking over 50 biomarkers such as vitamin D and ferritin which are integral to health, wellbeing and performance. Most of our blood samples can be collected at home and once analysed our proprietary software converts results data into intuitive graphics accessed through a personal health dashboard. Here customers can track their biomarkers over time, allowing them to see how changes in diet, lifestyle or training are impacting their inner health. Our service is accessible, convenient and fast.
SD – Hi, could you please introduce yourself?
SB – Hi, I’m Sarah Bolt and I’m the founder and CEO of digital health start-up Forth, which gives people the power to track their health on the inside.
SD – Where are you based?
SB – We are based in Bristol, which is the second biggest digital hub outside of London. The South West is a beautiful part of the county as well as being the region with the highest proportion of businesses designated as ‘high growth’ in the UK.
SD – What is your background?
SB – I have worked in marketing for over 25 years, predominately on B2C brands such as Dyson and Jack Daniel’s, then 8 years ago I decided I wanted to work in a sector that made a difference to people’s lives. I switched to healthcare and haven’t looked back. It’s been a great move, particularly as healthcare is going through such a radical change and the rise of digital health solutions.
SD – Tell us about the history and idea behind Forth?
SB – The lightbulb moment for Forth came when I bought my first FitBit and around the same time had a blood test at my GP’s surgery – the type where you have to wait a week for the result and are then told by the receptionist that everything is fine, but you are not actually given access to the result. The idea of giving people the power to directly measure and track their inside health was born. Healthcare is radically changing and so are our attitudes to our own health. Health consumerism is on the rise, we want to be able to proactively manage our own health rather than be passive recipients of care. In short we want greater understanding and more control. Forth gives people this.
SD – How does your solution work?
SB – We enable people to gain access to accredited lab testing without the need for a GP referral. People simply order a test through our website, most require only a small sample of blood, which can be taken at home by the customer using a simple finger prick kit. We also offer a number of larger tests, which measure biomarkers across multiple systems in the body. We need a larger blood sample for these, so we have established a network of over 100 clinics throughout the UK where you can get the sample drawn. Results are available in a matter of days and are viewed through a personal health dashboard. Our proprietary software converts results data into intuitive graphics so it’s super easy to understand where you fall on the scale. Our platform also enables people to track their results over time so they can see what impact their lifestyle or training decisions are having on their numbers.
SD – How does it benefit people?
SB – We want to give people insight into their internal health, so they can proactively manage and improve it. More and more of us are using technology such as wearables to track our health and activity. We’re tracking steps, sleep, calories yet we have little idea what impact this is having on our internal health – the part that really matters. Our service gives people a window into their health on the inside.
SD – How does Forth differ from other products on the market?
SB – We hear on a daily basis the crisis that the NHS is under. Getting an appointment with your GP is not always easy and with rising threshold criteria it is hard to convince your GP to give you a blood test unless you show obvious symptoms of being unwell. Forth is about maintaining and improving good health, there is definitely a gap in the market for a service like Forth which we intend to fill.
SD – What are the next steps for Forth?
SB – The next step for us is to raise investment to scale our business and to ensure people are aware our service is available. We have just launched an equity crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube, one of the world’s leading platforms. Our campaign has got off to an amazing start. We are almost 40% funded, and we’ve been live just 4 days. You can learn more about our campaign and view our progress by visiting https://www.crowdcube.com/companies/forth/pitches/b3MVel
SD – What do you see as the biggest challenges ahead?
SB – The biggest challenge going forward will be to ensure our differentiation as more players see the opportunities within this space. We’ve got very ambitious plans, so this is just the first stage of our service offer.
SD – What do you see as the Digital Health landscape in 2020?
SB – Digital health will continue to grow rapidly. The key going forward will be personalisation and how services can be tailored to meet an individual’s needs.
SD – How do people find our more information?
SB- You can find out more about our service by visiting our website www.forthwithlife.co.uk or checking out our Crowdcube campaign https://www.crowdcube.com/companies/forth/pitches/b3MVel . I always love hearing from people who are passionate about healthcare, so people can always get in touch with me directly via email@example.com
SD – thanks for your time