The National Women’s Health Information Center

The National Women's Health Information Center offers women's health resources and materials for consumers and medical professionals. The Center is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - The Office of Women's Health-serving as the government's champion and focal point for women's health issues, and works to redress inequities in research, health care services, and education that have historically placed the health of women at risk. The Office on Women's Health coordinates women's health efforts in the U.S. to eliminate disparities in health status and supports culturally sensitive educational programs that encourage women to take personal responsibility for their own health and wellness.

The Center recently sponsored National Women's Health Week from May 8-14, 2005. Special events and activities were conducted around the country to spotlight women's health concerns. In Chicago, there was an outdoor health and fitness expo sponsored by SELF magazine as well as the kickoff of a 12-week walking challenge.

During National Women's Health Week, women should discuss with their health care professionals which of the following tests are right for them, when they should have them and how often:

• Mammograms-everyone one to two years starting at age 40

• Pap smears-every one to three years if sexually active or older than 21

• Cholesterol checks-regularly, starting at age 45 (if a smoker, diabetic or if heart disease runs in the family, cholesterol checks should start at age 20)

• Diabetes tests-if diagnosed with high blood pressure or high cholesterol

• Blood pressure-checked at least every two years, beginning at age 18

In addition to promoting this special women's health awareness week, the Center provides timely, helpful information on a variety of women's health concerns. Resources available include: Today's Health News; FAQs about women's health; health information available in different languages; and, other important medical resources. This information is available at <http://www.4women.gov/>.

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May 2005Volume 10Number 3PDF icon PDF version (for best printing)