Anthea Morris, Co-Founder of Better2Know
A global provider of sexual health testing services, education and information
Having had a sexual encounter with a new partner, no-one wants to sit in a public waiting room at their local GUM clinic – much less wait weeks for their test results!
Our aim is to take the drama out of a potentially embarrassing situation so people can carry on with their lives. Our executive testing service provides fast, accurate and confidential results, so if you have had a risky encounter, you can still do the right thing to protect you and your regular partner’s health.
That’s the ethos behind Better2Know – a business I founded with my partner Mike Asher in 2011. At the time, I was helping doctors translate their ideas into business opportunities and Mike had 25 years of medical diagnostics experience.
A collection of stories we heard over several months made us begin to question the NHS’ sexual health testing services… How could it be done better?
Fast-forward seven years and Better2Know is now the world’s largest private provider of sexual health testing services. We’ve got 5,000 clinics located in 20 countries; offices in the UK and Cape Town; and a team of 24 people.
Instead of waiting 28 or even 90 days for a HIV test, we offer them 10 days after the client’s encounter. Chlamydia and gonorrhoea results can be back the same day with our UK fast-track service. There’s no need for your GP to be involved and results are given personally by Better2Know online or by telephone.
It’s hugely satisfying when, having identified an infection, people go on to receive appropriate treatment. One gentleman who had finally been able to start a family wrote to me: ‘You have literally changed our lives’.
‘How can healthcare make people better?’ is a question I still ask constantly; that’s why I’m proud to be a lay member of NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group.
They say it’s lonely at the top, but I think it’s also lonely being an entrepreneur. Working in partnership with Mike, I’ve found that dreams and problems become shared.
I also believe that having a nine-to-five job makes it difficult to fully commit to getting your business off the ground. Take a leap of faith and just do it!