Treehouse Medical: Reimagining Maternal Care



Treehouse Medical is on a mission to reimagine the world of maternal health and is one of the latest cutting-edge startups to join our MedStack community. In this Q&A with Founder and CEO Julia Slanina, we look at what inspired her entrepreneurial journey and how Treehouse Medical is pushing the boundaries of traditional care.

What inspired you to create Treehouse Medical?

I started this company when I needed to halt my MD studies. I was in between my first and second year of medical school when my mother was diagnosed with advanced stage ovarian cancer. I had a 2-year old at home and given my passion for pediatrics, I knew I wanted to support the maternal and children’s health space in some capacity. I noticed a real lack of resources and digital options that existed for care providers, expectant mothers and families from conception to early childhood. After the loss of my mother, I made it my prerogative to bring light to an area of medicine and healthcare that needs attention and support for the well being of women and children.

How can digital technologies help to enhance maternal health?

There is a massive unmet opportunity to improve maternal and infant outcomes by leveraging both personalized care and technological infrastructure at scale. At present in Canada, there are many parts of the country that simply do not have access to maternal support whether it be pre- or postnatally. Whether it be urban, rural, remote, or vulnerable population access to a high quality level of care, empowerment and comfort is necessary for all during pregnancy, childbirth and in the early years of life. Treehouse Medical’s digital solution serves the needs of providers, but also centers around the care of mothers and the families involved.

What impact has COVID had on the maternal health system?

Pregnancy, childbirth and parenthood can be a daunting time for many new and seasoned parents. A global pandemic has certainly created even more anxiety and fears that many expectant parents and healthcare providers did not foresee. It has not only put an additional strain on the maternal health system but pre- and postnatal care post COVID-19 will likely look very different. What this global pandemic has, however, highlighted is the need for alternative methods of communication and care delivery. In this regard, having effective and efficient digital infrastructure that supports the maternal health industry is imperative for providers and their client/patient population.

How is Treehouse Medical helping to redefine maternal care?

Treehouse Medical is a HIPAA-compliant mobile and desktop application that works with maternal health providers such as midwives, doulas, lactation consultants, and many more in offering their client network an integrative tech solution. This is Canada’s first secure two-way care management system that empowers providers and clients alike. Our solution permits providers to offer the gift of connected virtual care and support to their clients and staff alike, but also empower the client by giving them an open and transparent communication tool.

What advantage does Treehouse Medical provide to healthcare providers?

Treehouse Medical works by focusing on the needs of providers through superior and secure care management tools. It empowers providers by giving them a digital toolkit to exercise all of their needs around providing care to their clients but also running their business. It recognizes that providers have different needs, and allows for different tools to be added depending on their practice and clients.

How does Treehouse Medical support the needs of families?

Treehouse Medical is a free application for clients available through your healthcare professional. Clients stay securely connected to their care team through a secure dashboard designed to follow their needs. The pregnancy and postpartum period is a very special time, full of intimacy, privacy and depth. Our platform helps and supports expectant mothers and their families as they evolve during their pregnancy journey and beyond. The Treehouse Medical solution is a patient-centric care model that delivers on a full spectrum of needs.

How does Treehouse Medical guarantee the safety and security of sensitive patient data?

Treehouse Medical has state-of-the-art end-to-end encryption throughout the platform. When using Treehouse, you’re using a platform that has been built from the ground up for handling sensitive medical information. Unlike consumer platforms, Treehouse Medical is architected to adhere to rigorous standards to ensure that it can be used legally for clinical purposes.

What aspects of maternal care does Treehouse Medical encompass?

The Treehouse Medical dashboard provides extensive and comprehensive features that support providers and clients from conception to early childhood. It permits you to communicate virtually, support clients with virtual peer groups, webinars, videos, and offer a comprehensive clinical experience in-person or remotely. Providers can also use remote dopplers, no-touch thermometers, and other peripheral devices to track health and overall wellness. It allows you to stay connected to your team no matter how big or small, and track your client’s care journey in order to provide the most proactive care possible.

What role do you hope to play in shaping the future of maternal care?

Our commitment is focused on supporting mothers, families and care providers in a space that is often overlooked and underserved from a health software and management perspective. The maternal health industry will need to adapt rapidly to the growing demands of digital care and management. As such, Treehouse Medical intends on leading the way in connecting providers across Canada and globally in delivering premium and superior innovative tools.