Quilt Woman: Carolyn, Co-Founder of Tia Clinic
Introducing the new “one-stop-shop” for women’s health: Tia. Next month they’re open their first clinic in NYC to bring accessible and convenient health care to all who identify as female.
The Inspiration Behind Tia, the World’s First For Women By Women Healthcare Space with Co-Founder, Carolyn
Can you share about your background and upbringing? How has your journey led you to where you are today?
I grew up in a very entrepreneurial family where taking risks and the path “less followed” was actively encouraged. This risk taking mentality was balanced by unconditional support and a “we’ll be here if shit hits the fan” type of love. This duality in my upbringing and family today has been key in pushing me to become a founder and taking risks in my personal and professional life.
What is Tia and what inspired you to create it?
Tia is a next-gen women’s healthcare startup building products, tools, and services to help every woman be their own patient advocate and get meaningfully better healthcare. Our next product is the Tia Clinic — a sex-positive "one-stop-shop" for female health with gynecology, primary care and wellness under one roof and one health record.
I started Tia after going through my own women’s healthcare struggles in my early 20s (a very frustrating and long PCOS diagnosis process) that gave me a very real and personal exposure to everything that is fundamentally broken in healthcare today. This propelled me to start Tia with the goal of reimaging women’s health from the ground up through the lens of the uniquely female experience.
We’re nearing the New York City Tia launch date - How has the journey been from conception to launch?
Concepting our very first IRL Tia Clinic has been the most amazing and rewarding creative journey. Rather than design the Tia Clinic in a vacuum, we’ve looked to our community of users to help us co-create the Tia Clinic experience along with us. Everything from the exam room look and feel to the music we should be playing to the hours of operation to the language on our patient intake form is a byproduct of real stories, real pain points and real wants from real women.
What do you think is one of the most vital yet often overlooked aspects of women’s health?
Women’s menstrual cycles! Not just our monthly periods, but our broader cycle and associated physiological and emotional manifestations . At Tia, we believe that a woman’s cycle is the “5th vital sign” that should be considered amongst other data points and indicators when evaluating, diagnosing and treating any female patient. In layman’s terms, it’s a recognition that to be female, is to be cyclic. And that female patients are fundamentally different from male patients as a result.
The Tia Clinic is designed through this distinctly female “Cycle-Connected Care” lens, which we believe is essential to shifting from treating women based on an isolated symptom or snapshot moment in time to treating the whole woman, and improving her health outcomes holistically.
What’s been one of the most significant obstacles you’ve overcome or are currently overcoming? And what lessons have you learned?
How to delegate. Like many founders, I have perfectionist tendencies and a very crystalized vision in my mind for what I want to create. This can make delegating and creating space for others to add to and refine my ideas challenging. I’ve learned that a testament of a strong leader is someone who can set clear expectations, manage to goals instead of tasks, and create space for others to be leaders and owners. Knowing when to take a back seat and let someone else make the call (even if it’s different than the call I would have made), and when to jump back in and get into the weeds and fight for my view is something I’m still working on.
What are a few tokens of wisdom that you have carried with you throughout your life?
Don’t try to connect the dots forwards; instead make choices intuitively and opportunistically, and be wowed by the picture you paint in your life when you connect the dots backwards.
What is your favorite part of your home? Why?
My backyard. It’s a calming zen haven for me. A soothing place to read, have a glass of wine, and spend meaningful time with the people that matter most to me in my life.
#Ask - Is there anything the Quilt community can do to support you?
Join the Tia Clinic as a Founding Member — and spread the word to other women you know who deserve better care! We look to our Founding Members as true co-creators and partners-in-crime. To be our eyes and ears on the ground. To tell us what they love and what desperately needs to change about healthcare today. To help us shape our very first Tia Clinic and define along with us, a new bar for quality care for women everywhere.