future of
women's health
From the ‘reproducing body’ to a ‘multidimensional body’

Note from the Authors: 

This piece does not reflect a global point of view and is written from a Western perspective. We used Western sources for our research and conducted the analysis using a Western lens and ideologies.


We are living through a critical phase in time where there are positive and negative forces struggling to both advance and hold back women’s healthcare. But times of struggle and adversity are the birthplaces of innovation and significant advancement. Societal norms are shifting and with them new and exciting innovations are emerging.

But today, the investment in women’s health conditions (outside of oncology) comprises less than 2% of the current healthcare pipeline. Investing in women’s health makes good business and societal sense. Women continue to outlive men and the life expectancy gap is growing. In 2023, life expectancy in the US reached its widest gap in over 30 years (79 vs. 73 years respectively). Women are 76% more likely to have visited a doctor in the past year, they control 80% of family healthcare decisions and pick up 70% of prescriptions.

As we’ve peered into the future, we’ve felt it necessary to consider both positive and darkly negative future. Our goal is to encourage us all to make the choices and decisions that will lead to a positive healthcare futures that will benefit all of society.

Reflecting on
women’s health today
From the ‘reproducing body’ to a ‘multidimensional body’
In the medical field, women have historically been seen as the “reproducing body” and men are the “standard body”. While reproduction is one of the defining biological functions of a woman’s body, labeling it the “reproducing body” has allowed the medical field to ignore the full spectrum of what makes up women’s health.

Women’s health is an intersection of physical, psychological and societal-cultural forces compounded by lingering biases around women and the experience of pain.

Despite huge leaps in innovation in the 21st century,
a narrow view of women’s body and health persists.
The field of medical research has, until recently, viewed the female body as too complex and “messy”, opting to exclude them from clinical studies. The cost to all of us is a lack of in-depth knowledge about women’s health beyond reproduction.

In the political sphere, debates about women’s access to healthcare are primarily rooted in reproduction (e.g. overturning Roe v. Wade and the resulting abortion bans). This decision ignored the consequences on other aspects of women’s health such as gestational diabetes, hypertension, and life-threatening bleeding.
When we force women’s health into this limited focus, we directly contribute to the systemic barriers women face in the healthcare system.
Values are shifting in women’s health!
Today, we are seeing the emergence of an expanded future of women's health. One that is starting to take seriously a view beyond reproduction, driven by emerging shifts in traditionally held values in society and mainstream culture.
While many of these shifts are rooted in aspects of reproduction, the shifts themselves indicate a move towards a widening of the women’s health lens.
learn more about the shifting Values
Innovations in women's health are gaining momentum!
Our foresight team scanned the current landscape discovering vast technological innovation in wide ranging areas of women’s healthcare. It is exciting to see real movement, and new products and services being offered to make women’s health more expansive, up-to-date, and innovative.
Explore the Innovations
‘Best-Care’ & ‘Worst-Care’ Future Scenarios
We believe that for women’s health the ‘best-care’ scenario can be the only way forward.
Many companies have decided to no longer fund research into the unique ways health manifests in the female physiology. While there has been a great deal of positive momentum, social and political agendas put the future of female health advancements at risk.
Our commitment to ensuring a best-care scenario for woman’s health:
The future is still emerging and it is up to the generations of today to shape a positive future that invests in women’s health.
At FSi, we have committed helping build bridges that lead to a culture of care for women’s health. We have committed to:
1. Including BIPOC women and trans folks in primary research.
2. Actively encouraging our healthcare leaders to fight for equal representation of women and men in research and clinical trials, where both perspectives will have an impact on treatment outcomes.
3. Encouraging healthcare leaders to make choices and pursue strategies that will benefit women’s health today and into the future.
4. Continuing the conversation surrounding the importance of expanding conventional understandings of how we view women’s health.
5. Elevating the voices and stories of those we speak with through our work and the voices and stories of our team members.
A word from the authors:
Ireena Haque – Futures Practitioner
Maggie Kent – Futures Practitioner
Karen McCauley – CEO
Creative Director:
Jananda Lima 
Gabriel Lopes
Juliana Bandeira
Utkarsh Subnis
Project Manager:
Khadijah Deshong