The data on the reverse side of this page represents a very small sampling of the inequities and bias that exist in women’s health research. While some progress has been made since 1993, when the National Institutes of Health mandated that women and minorities be included in any government-funded health research, there’s still a long way to go.
Glaring gaps remain. Drug companies and medical device manufacturers are not required to comply with the 1993 rule, so women remain underrepresented in their studies. And even though more women are being included in federally funded trials, many studies don’t report results for men and women separately and women remain highly underrepresented in early stages of drug and device development. The results are that vital questions about women’s health are still not an area of focus.
The lives of women and men will vastly improve through research that is equally inclusive of women and men in trials – and female and male animals in preliminary research. By conducting research in parity and reporting gender outcomes separately, health breakthroughs will be accelerated and health outcomes around the world improved.
We are passionate about women’s health and the impact that we know can be made if research reflects how men and women are different down to the cellular level. WomensHealthAccessMatters.com (WHAM!) has been created as an initiative of AccessCircles to focus on increasing awareness of women’s health issues and implementing strategies that will improve the inequities and bias in research and accelerate scientific discovery in women’s health.
- Autoimmune Disease
- Brain Health
- Cardiovascular Disease
More research is needed to understand a woman’s overall risk of being affected by an illness within one of these four areas of disease. Accelerated research will help in understand why women are afflicted either exclusively, disproportionately or differently.
HOW WE WILL CREATE CHANGE
WHAM! has been created to fund investigators through private donations. WHAM!’s gifts will provide the much needed resources to allow for the success of new research that creates the essential leverage in seeking and obtaining larger federal grants.
WHAM! will create a Collaborative with our Lead Scientific Research Partner, the Connors Center for Women’s Health and Gender Biology at Brigham Health/Harvard Medical School, and other leading institutions focused on women’s health research who will assist us in selecting the most far reaching opportunities, identifying and clarifying issues and strategies, goals and success measurements.
We will generate broader awareness and create a social movement to inspire action/support and improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of women’s health and its outcomes, while positively impacting the lives of women.
Relationships with foundations and other potential donors and limited partners to invest in vehicles to address the gap will be explored as will the possibility of partnering with a venture capital fund to invest in new ideas.
An annual convening will be held that brings together AccessCircles members, leaders and stakeholders from academia, foundations, government and technology to share ideas and successes and continue to strive for patient-centered, precision medicine.