May 29 2020
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Why did I make a WoPeeH in the first place?
My husband and I travelled to Nepal in September 2010. An interesting and beautiful but also very poor developing country. In our preparations for this journey we visited a sports store where I discovered a device named 'Urinelle', a disposable product for women to urinate in a standing position.
I had never seen or tried anything of the sort but at that very moment it crossed my mind a product like this could be very handy in unforeseen circumstances. Keeping in mind that my husband and I always enjoy extended walks in nature I decided this type of gadget could be a useful thing to carry with me. One never knows... right?
However, since we were going to visit a developing country with a barely organised waste processing system I did not relish the idea of using disposables and adding to the already existing garbage problems.
I decided to create myself something alike but fabricated of a durable material. That way, I would not only avoid creating waste, I also would never be out of disposables when I needed one.
So I created a plastic device that is easy to use, doesn't leak and easily fits in my handbag.
During our journey in Nepal sanitary facilities were usually perfect but still my device was very useful several times.
One day we were hiking and it rained heavily so I did not want to open my backpack to reach for my device and I decided I favored peeing the old-fashioned way rather than risking the content of my backpack to get wet. This of course is okay for me as long as enough bushes are around to protect my privacy, but still...
Although we had some rainy days in Nepal our holiday was fantastic!
Back home I was reminded of my device during my weekly visits to my neighbour, a hundred-year-old woman who lived in a nursinghome. I often heard her complaints about the long wait for a nurse to assist her for a bathroom visit. As known the staff in care institutions is always under a high workload and, when needed women are simply provided with a diaper which is often felt as vexing or humiliating for a lady. My neighbour and many with her avoid the urinating problem as much as possible by reducing fluid intake. Not very healthy but quite effective.
I did some research and discovered most commonly used urinary aids for bedridden women are various types of bedpans, urine bottles, diapers or a catheter. None of these is easy to use independently so this can (and should) be improved!
In response to the above problem of my neighbour and her fellow inhabitants of the nursinghome I was spurred to design a device for use in a sitting position to enable women to urinate from a wheelchair into a toilet. The device I created for that purpose worked fine when tested but as I was not sure it is handy enough in use I did not (yet) develop it any further.
Encouraged by this succes I soon also made a device for woman to urinate while lying in bed. This handy device not only workes excellent, it also proved to be easy to use. It can be used independently by a woman while lying in bed and may be used repeatedly unassisted. I think the availability of this device may improve the wellbeing of women concerned considerably!
I feel sorry that my neighbour, who inspired me to develop my first idea further has passed away on the 25th of July of this year. She never got the chance to try one of my products.
Of course a device for this purpose should do what you expect it to do but, thinking back to our adventure in the rain I decided an additional requirement was a small size that fitted nicely in my jeans pocket so it would be at hand in any circumstance. Also my daughter assured me that the device should be properly closed in order to make it an hygienic portable device. The current version of the WoPeeH-pocket satisfies all our demands and, in contrast to all other products I tested it CAN be used without undressing or wetting your pants. :)
I decided that 'Women's Peeing Help' would be an accurate description of my urinary device, and also I really liked the abbreviation: WoPeeH!
Prototypes of both the WoPeeH-pocket and the WoPeeH-bed have been tested by a number of women and proved to be easy and reliable in use. This inspires me to develop these products further and bring them on the market.
For me, the WoPeeH-pocket is a valuable travel attribute. It rests in my pocket when travelling and it has proven to be handy in many expected and unexpected situations.
I hope WoPeeHs will be helpful to many women in future!