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2010s: CDC/ATSDR Contributions to Women’s Health

Below is a sample of contributions CDC and ATSDR have made in women's health during the 2010s.


Binge Drinking: A Serious, Under-Recognized Problem Among Women and Girls
Binge drinking is reported by one in eight U.S. adult women and one in five high school girls. Women who binge drink tend to do so frequently and with high intensity. Most high school girls who reported current alcohol use also reported binge drinking.

Updated Recommendations for Use of Tetanus Toxoid, Reduced Diphtheria Toxoid, and Acellular Pertussis Vaccine (Tdap) in Pregnant Women - Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), 2012
These updated recommendations on use of Tdap in pregnant women aim to optimize strategies for preventing pertussis morbidity and mortality in infants.

New Tools Available for CDC’s U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria (MEC) for Contraceptive Use, 2010
CDC has developed several new tools (summary charts, MEC Wheel, app) to assist health care providers in accessing and using the U.S. MEC.

Show Your Love Campaign
Show Your Love is a national campaign designed to improve the health of women and babies by promoting preconception health and health care. The campaign’s main goal is to increase the number of women who plan their pregnancies and engage in healthy behaviors before becoming pregnant.

The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, 2010 Findings on Victimization by Sexual Orientation
This special report is the first of its kind to present comparisons between lesbian, gay, and bisexual women and men by gender. Among the findings: Nearly 1 in 3 lesbians (29.4%), 1 in 2 bisexual women (49.3%), and 1 in 4 heterosexual women (23.6%) experienced at least one form of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in her lifetime.

Updated HPV Self-Study STD Modules for Clinicians
This web-based training course is designed to guide clinicians in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection.

New Study Shows HPV Vaccine Helping Lower HPV Infection Rates in Teen Girls
A new study that looks at the prevalence of human papillomavirus (HPV) infections in girls and women before and after the introduction of the HPV vaccine shows a significant reduction in vaccine-type HPV in U.S. teens.

U.S. Selected Practice Recommendations for Contraceptive Use, 2013: Adapted from the World Health Organization Selected Practice Recommendations for Contraceptive Use, 2nd Edition
The recommendations address a select group of common, yet sometimes controversial or complex, issues regarding initiation and use of specific contraceptive methods. These recommendations are a companion document to the previously published CDC recommendations U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2010.

Vital Signs: Overdoses of Prescription Opioid Pain Relievers and Other Drugs Among Women - United States, 1999–2010
In 2010, a total of 15,323 deaths among women were attributed to drug overdose, a rate of 9.8 per 100,000 population. Deaths from opioid pain relievers (OPRs) increased fivefold between 1999 and 2010 for women. Health-care providers should follow guidelines for responsible prescribing, including screening and monitoring for substance abuse and mental health problems, when prescribing OPR.

CDC launched or updated several apps for health providers and others: 

Prevent Group B Strep App for Obstetric and Neonatal Providers

STD Treatment App

U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria (MEC) for Contraceptive Use, 2010

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

Trends in Smoking Before, During, and After Pregnancy - Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System, United States, 40 Sites, 2000–2010
For the majority of sites, smoking prevalence before, during, or after pregnancy did not change over time. The prevalence of smoking during pregnancy decreased from 13.3% in 2000 to 12.3% in 2010, and the prevalence of smoking after delivery decreased from 18.6% in 2000 to 17.2% in 2010.

Science Speaks: A Focus on NIOSH Women in Science
The Women in Science video series spotlights a few of NIOSH's many talented female scientists. They discuss their journeys to science, challenges and experiences along the way, work duties, and how they balance work with family. Also, they offer advice to aspiring scientists, encouraging girls and young women to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

AMIGAS Outreach Intervention
AMIGAS is a bilingual educational outreach intervention designed to help promotoras (community health workers) and other lay health educators increase cervical cancer screening among Hispanics who have rarely or never had a Pap test. CDC funded a recent randomized controlled trial that showed AMIGAS is effective in promoting cervical cancer screening (Pap tests) among Hispanics aged 21 to 65 years.

Pregnancy Rates for U.S. Women Continue to Drop
The data in this report provide a comprehensive picture of pregnancies and pregnancy outcomes. Pregnancy rates for women in the United States continued to decline in 2009, reaching the lowest level in 12 years (102.1 per 1,000 women aged 15–44). This level is 12% below the 1990 peak (115.8).

The Surgeon General's Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding - How Communities Can Help
Across the United States, most new mothers hope to breastfeed. Breastfeeding can protect the health of babies and their mothers. With support from their families and communities, mothers are more likely to be able to breastfeed their babies.

On-Line Course Trains Nurses on Preventing Workplace Violence
A new free online course aims to train nurses on recognizing and preventing workplace violence. The multimedia training incorporates lesson text, videos depicting workplace violence incidents, testimonials from real nurses, and lesson quizzes.

How Did Cause of Death Contribute to Racial Differences in Life Expectancy in the United States in 2010?
Life expectancy for black females was 3.3 years lower than that of white females. This difference was due to higher death rates for black females for heart disease, cancer, diabetes, perinatal conditions, and stroke.

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African American Women Claiming their Power in Fight Against HIV
Take Charge. Take the Test. messages remind women that they have the power to take charge of their health and protect themselves from HIV through testing, talking openly with their partners about HIV, and insisting on safe sex. Resources for Take Charge. Take the Test

Breast Cancer Disparities
Black women have the highest death rates of all racial and ethnic groups and are 40% more likely to die of breast cancer than white women. The reasons for this difference result from many factors including having more aggressive cancers and fewer social and economic resources. To improve this disparity, black women need more timely follow-up and improved access to high-quality treatment.

Breastfeeding Action Guides
Health providers play a role to support patients’ intentions to breastfeed as well as health system changes to improve patient satisfaction and breastfeeding outcomes. These action guides outline what doctors, nurses, and health care leaders can do to make it possible for mothers to breastfeed their babies.

CDC Ad Campaign Reveals Harsh Reality of Smoking-Related Diseases
A hard-hitting national ad campaign that depicts the harsh reality of illness and damage suffered as a result of smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke was launched by CDC.

Current Contraceptive Use in the United States, 2006–2010, and Changes in Patterns of Use Since 1995
Sixty-two percent of women of reproductive age are currently using contraception. Of women using a contraceptive method in the month of the interview, the most common methods used are the pill (28%, or 10.6 million women) and female sterilization (27%, or 10.2 million women).

Emergency Preparedness and Response: Pregnant Women and Newborns
Research studies conducted after disasters in the United States have shown that pregnant women may have increased medical risks. Recently, CDC began to build capacity to respond to all types of events and track their effects on women and infants.

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders App
This application provides the latest information related to the use of alcohol during pregnancy and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs). This application allows users to easily find and share the latest in the prevention, recognition, and treatment of FASDs.

Fourth National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals, Updated Tables, September 2012
These updated tables for 119 chemicals include information by age, sex, and race/ethnicity.

Health Care Providers and Teen Pregnancy Prevention
Health care providers play a critical role in further reducing teen pregnancy rates through the care provided to adolescent patients. Tools, resources, media, and messages are available to assist the health provider.

Key Statistics from the National Survey of Family Growth
These Key Statistics give some of the most important findings from the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG). All results are from published reports or special tabulations. Where available, a hyperlink to the source report is given.

Nurses’ Miscarriages Linked to Chemicals at Work
A new CDC study finds a greater-than-expected risk of miscarriages among nurses, associated with occupational exposures to hazardous drugs.

Preconception Care and Health care Resource Center
The Preconception Health and Health Care Resource Center (the Resource Center) is a comprehensive web directory of hyperlinks to tools and resources designed to advance the health of men and women of reproductive age.

Right to Know Campaign Materials
CDC conducted a study to explore the barriers to breast cancer screening for women who have physical disabilities. As a result of this study, a family of health promotion materials (e.g., posters, MP3 files, low-tech fliers, print advertisements, and tip sheets) has been designed to increase awareness of breast cancer among women with physical disabilities and encourage these women to get screened.

Safety and Health among Hotel Cleaners
CDC convened a number of partners to develop the National Services Agenda, which includes safety and health goals for the Ac­commodations Industry. Groups such as unions, worker organizations, government agencies, and hotel/motel associations can build partnerships to implement these goals and help ensure that hotels are safe for all employees.

Update to CDC’s U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2010: Revised Recommendations for the Use of Hormonal Contraception Among Women at High Risk for HIV Infection or Infected with HIV
This report summarizes CDC’s assessment of the evidence regarding hormonal contraceptive use and the risk for HIV acquisition, transmission, and disease progression and the resulting updated guid­ance.

Use of Selected Clinical Preventive Services Among Adults — United States, 2007–2010: Breast Cancer Screening Among Adult Women
In 2010, an estimated 75.4% women aged ≥40 years and 79.7% of women aged 50–74 years reported having a mammogram within the past 2 years.

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Vital Signs: Hospital Support for Breastfeeding
The report used CDC surveillance data to determine the percent of U.S. hospitals with policies and practices that are consistent with the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding. In addition, the report provides actions steps for government officials; health practitioners; hospitals administrators; and new mothers to support hospitals as they work to promote breastfeeding initiation, duration, and exclusivity. Spurred by the release of this issue of Vital Signs, Kaiser Permanente announced that by January 1, 2013, all of its 29 hospitals that offer maternal and child health services will meet the ten steps to support breastfeeding as a measure of hospital quality and a key strategy in preventing childhood obesity.

Responding to Influenza: A Toolkit for Prenatal Care Providers (pdf)
The purpose of this toolkit is to provide basic information and communication resources to help prenatal care providers implement CDC recommendations.

Cooperative Agreement to Support Young Women Diagnosed with Breast Cancer
CDC awarded funding to seven organizations for a new three-year cooperative agreement, "Developing support and educational awareness for young (<45 years of age) breast cancer survivors in the United States," as part of a broader effort to support breast cancer awareness in young women.

Million Hearts™: Preventing a Million Heart Attacks and Strokes in Five Years
Cardiovascular disease - heart disease and stroke - is the leading killer of women. To reduce stroke and heart attacks across the nation, the recently launched Million Hearts initiative is working to promote heart-healthy lifestyles and to improve patient care by focusing on the “ABCS” of clinical prevention: Aspirin for people at risk, Blood pressure control, Cholesterol management, and Smoking cessation.

CDC Announces New Effort to Boost Number of Baby-Friendly Hospitals
CDC has awarded nearly $6 million over three years to the National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality to help hospitals nationwide make quality improvements to maternity care to better support mothers and babies to be able to breastfeed. The goal of the project is to accelerate the number of U.S. Baby-Friendly hospitals.

CDC Launches Effort to Protect Cancer Patients from Infections
CDC’s Preventing Infections in Cancer Patients program is a comprehensive initiative focusing on providing information, action steps, and tools for patients, their families, and their health care providers to reduce the risk of life-threatening infections during chemotherapy treatment.

National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS)
This survey provides baseline data that will be used to track trends in sexual violence, stalking and intimate partner violence. On average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States, based on a survey conducted in 2010. More than 1 million women are raped in a year and over 6 million women and men are victims of stalking in a year. These findings emphasize that sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence are important and widespread public health problems in the United States.

Maternal and Infant Outcomes Among Severely Ill Pregnant and Postpartum Women with 2009 Pandemic Influenza A (H1N1) - United States, April 2009-August 2010
Among women who delivered while hospitalized for influenza, 63.6% delivered preterm or very preterm and 43.8% delivered low birth weight infants compared with U.S. averages of 12.3% for preterm birth and 8.2% for low birth weight.

Vital Signs: Preventing Teen Pregnancy in the U.S.
Prevention efforts work by teaching teens how and why to delay starting sex and steps that they need to take if they become sexually active.

Opioid Pain Killers Linked to Increased Risk of Some Birth Defects
Babies born to women who take opioid pain killers such as codeine, oxycodone or hydrocodone just before or in early pregnancy are at increased but modest risk of birth defects, according to a CDC study.

Smoking Early in Pregnancy Raises Risk of Heart Defects in Infants
Maternal cigarette smoking in the first trimester was associated with a 20 to 70 percent greater likelihood that a baby would be born with certain types of congenital heart defects, according to a CDC study. The study is in the Feb. 28 issue of the journal Pediatrics.

Nail Technicians’ Health and Workplace Exposure Control
Nail salon employees are potentially exposed to dozens of chemicals including acrylates, solvents, and biocides as dusts or vapors.

Women at High Risk for Diabetes, Access and Quality of Health Care, 2003-2006
This report uses national datasets to provide information about the quality of care among women at high risk for diagnosed diabetes compared with women not at high risk. (CDC and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality report)

Reproductive Health Assessment After Disaster Toolkit
This toolkit provides a set of tools to assess the reproductive health needs of women aged 15-44 affected by natural and man-made disasters. Questionnaire topics include safe motherhood, infant care, family planning, family stressors and service needs, health and risk behaviors, and gender-based violence. The RHAD Toolkit is intended for United States health departments, however, other government and non-governmental organizations may be interested who provide reproductive health services to U.S. disaster-affected women. (Funding and scientific technical assistance provided by CDC).

Update to CDC’s U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2010: Revised Recommendations for the Use of Contraceptive Methods During the Postpartum Period
CDC updated the United States Medical Eligibility Criteria (USMEC) for Contraceptive Use recommendations for combined hormonal contraceptive use among postpartum women, based on new scientific evidence.

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CDC provided guidance and recommendations on the prevention and treatment of H1N1 in pregnant women during the 2009-2010 flu season.

Updated scientific evidence on how tobacco causes disease. The report, How Tobacco Smoke Causes Disease: The Biology and Behavioral Basis for Smoking-Attributable Disease: A Report of the Surgeon General, also explains how smoking harms reproduction and children's health. It discusses how smoking reduces a woman's chance of getting pregnant and how it can increase the risk for pregnancy complications, premature delivery, low birth weight infants, stillbirth, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

CDC in partnership with Liz Claiborne, Inc., developed a new online training, Dating Matters: Understanding Teen Dating Violence Prevention. The training is for educators, youth leaders, and others working with teens to help them understand the importance of healthy relationships and how to prevent violence before it starts.

Text4baby is a mobile information service that provides free text messages to pregnant women and new moms to help keep them safe and healthy. The messages address a variety of topics, including immunizations, nutrition, flu, mental health, oral health, and more. CDC is one of many outreach partners for this new program.

The Sexually Transmitted Diseases Treatment Guidelines- 2010 advise physicians and other health-care providers on the most effective treatment regimens, screening procedures, and prevention and vaccination strategies for sexually transmitted diseases. The Guidelines are based on newly available evidence and include: expanded STD prevention recommendations including preexposure HPV vaccine; revised gonorrhea treatment regimens; new treatment regimens for genital warts and bacterial vaginosis; discussion of the role of mycoplasma genitalium and trichomoniasis in the evaluation of urethritis and cervicitis and treatment related implications; and revised guidance on the diagnostic evaluation and management of syphilis.

For 20 years, CDC's National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP) has provided free or low-cost mammograms and Pap tests to low-income women with little or no health insurance. Since 1990, NBCCEDP-funded programs have served more than 3.7 million women, provided more than 9.2 million breast and cervical cancer screening examinations, and diagnosed more than 44,885 breast cancers, 2,554 invasive cervical cancers, and 123,563 premalignant cervical lesions, of which 42% are high-grade.

CDC revised the Guidelines for the Prevention of Perinatal Group B Streptococcal (GBS) Disease. These 2010 guidelines were developed using an evidence-based approach in collaboration with several professional associations.

Recent Trends in Cesarean Delivery in the United States reports that the cesarean rate rose by 53% from 1996 to 2007, reaching 32%, the highest rate ever reported in the United States. From 1996 to 2007, the cesarean rate increased for mothers in all age and racial and Hispanic origin groups.

Use of Contraception in the United States: 1982-2008, presents national estimates of contraceptive use and method choice based on the 1982, 1995, 2002, and 2006–2008 National Surveys of Family Growth. Contraceptive use is a major factor affecting birth and pregnancy rates as well as the rate of unintended pregnancy.

CDC convened an Advisory Committee on Breast Cancer in Young Women, a federal advisory committee established by the Education and Awareness Requires Learning Young (EARLY) Act, section 10413 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111-148). The EARLY Act authorizes CDC to develop initiatives to increase knowledge of breast health and breast cancer among women, particularly among those under the age of 40 and those at heightened risk for developing the disease.

U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2010 provides recommendations for the use of specific contraceptive methods by women and men who have certain characteristics or medical conditions.

This report, Teenagers in the United States: Sexual Activity, Contraceptive Use, and Childbearing, 2006-2008, presents national estimates of sexual activity, contraceptive use, and births among males and females 15-19 years of age in the United States in 2006-2008 from the National Survey of Family Growth.

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