Biden launches White House initiative to revolutionize women’s health research
President Joe Biden announced the creation of the first-ever White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research, an effort to address long-standing gaps in women’s health research.
The White House Gender Policy Council and First Lady Jill Biden will oversee the project, which aims to completely change how the country studies women’s health and how much it costs.
“To achieve scientific breakthroughs and enhance our ability to prevent, detect and treat diseases, we must be bold,” the president said. “That’s why, today, we’re creating a new White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research so that my administration — from the National Institutes of Health to the Department of Defense — can do everything we can to drive innovation in women’s health and close research gaps.”
Although women make up more than half of the population, women have historically been understudied and underrepresented in health research. The lack of investment in research into women’s health has created significant gaps, hindering our understanding of conditions that disproportionately affect women.
Jill Biden, a longtime advocate for women’s health, stressed the need for change.
“Every woman I know has a story about leaving her doctor’s office with more questions than answers,” the first lady said. “Our new White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research will help change that by identifying bold solutions to uncover the answers every woman and her family deserve.”
The initiative will coordinate efforts on behalf of the Office of the First Lady and the Gender Policy Council, and is chaired by renowned expert in women’s health research, Dr. Carolyn Mazur. Mazur was previously the Norma Weinberg Spungen and Joan Lipson Bildner Professor in Women’s Health Research at Yale University School of Medicine, and brings a wealth of experience to her role as chair.
The presidential memorandum establishing the White House Initiative sets out critical goals, including establishing an initiative that includes executive departments and agencies across the federal government. The White House said members of the initiative will provide concrete recommendations within 45 days to advance women’s health research, address disparities and maximize investments in the field.
Focusing on high-priority issues such as heart attacks in women and menopause can help get things done faster. It will also include scientific, private and philanthropic groups looking for new public-private partnerships to encourage new ideas and ensure the progress of all research related to women’s health.
“Our goal is to pioneer the next generation of discoveries in women’s health and improve the lives of millions of women,” Mazur said. “This initiative will serve as a catalyst for transformative change, bringing together diverse sectors to advance research and advance the health and well-being of women across the country.”