CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WVDN) – Last week, U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) reintroduced the bipartisan Stephanie Tubbs Jones Uterine Fibroid Research and Education Act, legislation that would expand research and raise awareness through public education programs to support women suffering from uterine fibroids. The legislation is named after the late U.S. Representative Stephanie Tubbs Jones of Ohio, who championed this issue.
“I’m proud to join with Senator Booker to both honor a champion of this issue and help prevent, diagnose, and treat uterine fibroids for future generations of women,” Senator Capito said. “Millions of women are affected by uterine fibroids, which often go undiagnosed and can have significant health consequences in both the short and long term. Making investments in research and education efforts is a critical step in supporting individuals who suffer from this condition across our country.”
“Millions of Americans, especially Black women, are living with uterine fibroids and suffering from its devastating health impacts,” Senator Booker said. “We must continue raising awareness and investing in diagnostic and treatment options to alleviate the burden of uterine fibroids. I am proud to join my colleagues in introducing this important legislation that will expand research efforts, improve public awareness, and promote evidence-based care for uterine fibroids. We must empower women with the knowledge and resources they need to make informed decisions about their health.”
July marks Fibroid Awareness Month, an opportunity to raise awareness for uterine fibroids, which are noncancerous growths of the uterus that impact an estimated 26 million women nationwide. Symptoms of this devastating condition include severe menstrual bleeding, anemia, pregnancy complications and loss, and infertility.
In addition to the pain and discomfort they cause, uterine fibroids cost the healthcare system an estimated $5.9 billion to $34.4 billion every year. Despite their prevalence and impact, preventing, diagnosing, and treating uterine fibroids is very difficult. This condition often goes undiagnosed, and even when it is accurately diagnosed, treatment is usually invasive and can lead to infertility.
Specifically, the Stephanie Tubbs Jones Uterine Fibroid Research and Education Act would:
- Expand and intensify research on uterine fibroids and authorize $30 million a year for fiscal years 2024 through 2028 for that effort.
- Require the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to collect data on services provided to people diagnosed with uterine fibroids under Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
- Create a public education program for uterine fibroids.
- Promote evidence-based care for uterine fibroids among healthcare providers.
The full text of the legislation can be found here.
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