Standards for Disposable Sanitary Pads (Menstrual Health Standards Webinar Series)
A critical component is the use of effective and safe materials for absorbing or collecting menstrual blood. Traditional practices in LMICs have seen the use of materials like cloth, hay, ash etc. as absorbents. More recently, this need has been served by consumer products - disposable sanitary pads and tampons. Over the last few years, these products have evolved to offer increased absorbency and comfort to users through use of wood pulp, non-woven fibres, super absorbent polymers, additives etc. Innovations like the menstrual cup (made of medical grade silicone) and the reusable cloth pad (made of natural and synthetic fabrics), have also made their way to the mainstream. These offer increased choice to women in managing their menstruation. However, true informed choice requires that they meet certain benchmarks of safety and performance. To this end, various manufacturers, CSOs and advocacy groups have been working on national and global standards for menstrual products.
- Suhani Jalota is the founder and CEO of Myna Mahila Foundation, a women’s health organization in India. She is currently a Knight Hennessy Scholar pursuing her MBA and PhD in Health Policy and Economics at Stanford University. For the last eight years, she has been working in urban slum areas and rural communities in Philippines, South Africa, Thailand, and India. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Global Health from Duke University. She is a Forbes Asia under 30 recipient 2018, Young Achiever’s Mother Teresa Memorial Awardee 2018, and Queen’s Young Leader 2017.
- Louise Klintner is a fourth year PhD student in business at Lund University in Sweden. She is conducting qualitative research on the factors that drive destigmatization in the menstrual product field. As part of her research Louise has gathered extensive qualitative data on standardization in the menstrual product field, from a number of different actor groups, including governmental agencies, large producers, consumer organizations and entrepreneurs.
- Tanya Mahajan has over 10 years of experience in market development of health products and services in low income settings. She is the co-founder of the Menstrual Health Alliance India and leads M&E programs on health and gender at Development Solutions. As a proponent of informed choice in menstrual health, Tanya has been engaged in private sector advocacy and the development of menstrual product standards in India to enhance the availability of information and choice to consumers. She is also leading a study in partnership with University of Liverpool on the acceptability of menstrual cups to increase choice for Indian women and is an advisor for the Tata Trusts' program on menstrual health across eight states in India.
- Jaydeep Manda is an Engineer and MBA in Innovations and Entrepreneurship with a Global Innovation Program certificate from GSB-Stanford University-USA. 12+ years of experience in menstrual hygiene, rural innovation and micro-enterprise development as an entrepreneur, consultant/advisor with several governments, World Bank, UN organizations, UKAID, USAID & International NGOs like Aga Khan Foundation. He has been recognised/awarded by several National & International organisations/Govt.s like Govt. of India, Prime-Minister of India, President of India, CII, FICCI, UN, GSC, Nasscom, MIT, Stanford University-USA, University of Texas-USA, SOCAP, TIE-USA & INDIA, USAID, SOCAP-USA, JIII-Japan, IUSSTF, Lokheed Martin, SIFE(now Enactus), IIMs, ISB, Miss World Organisation for his innovations, entrepreneurship & menstrual hygiene sector work.
- Michael Moscherosch works in R&D in the Consumer Division at Johnson & Johnson. He has 25+ years of experience in product development for the consumer healthcare sector with expertise in technology transfer and adaptation and environmental sustainability. In his current role as program manager for Johnson & Johnson’s Africa Innovation Challenge, his focus is on incubating health care related startups in sub-Saharan Africa.
The webinar is part of a series co-hosted by the Menstrual Health Alliance of India, the African Coalition for Menstrual Health Management, MH Day and the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition.