Women's Health Updates — September 2021

Learn about recent developments in women's health as well as SWHR's activities that promote the study of sex and gender influences on health and serve our mission to improve women's health through science, policy, and education.
The Latest from SWHR
Psoriatic Arthritis Fact Sheet Provides Key Diagnostic and Treatment Information
Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is a chronic immune-mediated systemic condition that affects about 30% of people with psoriasis.

As part of its efforts during August, Psoriasis Awareness Month, SWHR launched a fact sheet designed to help both clinicians and patients in their approach to diagnosing and treating PsA. The fact sheet reviews common symptoms and risk factors of PsA as well as information on how PsA presents differently in women.

SWHR recently convened an interdisciplinary Uterine Fibroids Working Group to review the current state of knowledge about uterine fibroids and recommend areas in which to prioritize efforts to address research gaps and improve diagnosis, treatment, and access to care for patients with this chronic disease. A new report from SWHR in the Journal of Women's Health outlines overarching themes and recommendations coming out of the Working Group's discussions on September 21-22, including the immediate need to increase research investment, improve fibroid assessment using pelvic imaging, implement longitudinal study designs, and address factors that contribute to disease disparities. Read the report.
SWHR on July 27, 29, and 30, convened a diverse working group of clinicians, genetic counselors, patient advocates, policy professionals, and industry representatives for a three-day roundtable meeting on expanded carrier screening and noninvasive prenatal screening, two types of genetic screenings that can provide important insight into a family's genetic information.

In its latest blog post, SWHR recaps the roundtable discussions, focusing specifically on knowledge gaps and unmet needs in clinical care, education, and policy that could be addressed in order to improve the integration of genetic screening in women's health care. Read the blog post.
In preparation for the congressionally requested Advancing NIH Research on the Health of Women: A 2021 Conference, NIH is inviting comments from the extramural scientific community, professional societies, and the general public to assist in identifying women's health research gaps and pitfalls in clinical practices. Comments received will be used to inform discussion and help shape the direction and scope of the conference.

Responses to the Request for Information must be submitted by September 15, 2021 for consideration. Learn more.
Chambers Agree to FY2022 Budget Resolution
The U.S. House of Representatives on August 24 adopted the Senate-passed $3.5 trillion budget resolution for fiscal year (FY) 2022 and green-lighted the budget reconciliation process, which will allow the Senate to pass legislation, including components of President Biden's American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan, by a simple majority.

The FY 2022 budget resolution provides top-line spending instructions for congressional committees, including an instructed $726 billion for the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee with policy recommendations for research infrastructure. (The American Jobs Plan included a recommended $40 billion for "upgrading research infrastructure in laboratories across the country, including brick-and-mortar facilities and computing capabilities and networks" to be spent across federal research agencies.)

The House and Senate now have until September 15 to craft a reconciliation package and have it ready for floor action around the same time as the infrastructure bill. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said the goal is to pass both bills by the end of September. Read more from NPR.

On August 3, SWHR participated in a listening session on the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H) proposal with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). The event was part of a series of listening sessions being held with stakeholders in the science community to inform the planning process for ARPA-H. SWHR's comments highlighted the opportunity for ARPA-H to benefit areas of health and disease that have not historically received robust funding, including many conditions unique to or more common in women, and to incorporate a lifespan approach that is complementary and additive to NIH research. Learn more about the ARPA-H Listening Sessions Set.

SWHR seeks an experienced, intellectually curious and dynamic professional who will play a key role in developing, implementing, and maintaining SWHR's website, blog, social media channels, educational materials, and various internal and external outreach.

SWHR seeks a highly motivated and talented candidate to support development functions for science programs, policy initiatives, education
Research!America will host its annual National Health Research Forum virtually from September 13-15. This year's theme, Straight Talk: Fighting Health Threats Faster, will explore how the sense of urgency and collaborative spirit that have defined the pandemic response can be applied to drive faster progress against other pressing health challenges. Learn more.
The Women's Health Innovation Summit will take place in Boston on September 14-15 and virtually on September 28. The Summit is committed to tackling unmet needs and championing innovative approaches and solutions in women's health. Learn more.
The North American Menopause Society is holding its annual meeting from September 22-25 in Washington, D.C. This year's meeting, with the theme of The State of Midlife Women's Health is intended to provide comprehensive updates on the most relevant issues to menopause and midlife women's health. Learn more and register.