Washington, DC—The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), AAGL (formerly known as the American Association of Gynecologic Laparoscopists), the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM), the Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics (APGO), the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), the American Urogynecologic Society (AUGS), the National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health (NPWH), the Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) released the following statement for International Women's Day 2018:
“As the leading groups of professionals providing health care for women in the United States, we join together to observe International Women’s Day 2018 and pledge to continue our efforts, both domestic and abroad, to create a world where health care disparities will one day no longer exist and gender parity is achieved.
“Women account for nearly 50 percent of the global population and, currently, there are 81 countries where women make up the majority. Yet women continue to be one of the most marginalized groups in many regions of the world, particularly when it comes to access to reproductive health care. Family planning offers women options as to when she will begin or expand her family. Pregnancies that are planned are less likely to have adverse outcomes, including perinatal and maternal morbidity and mortality.
“This year’s theme is #PressforProgress. It recognizes global activism for women's equality—fueled by movements like #MeToo and #TimesUp—and the need to keep the momentum going in what has become a growing global movement. Women are vital to their communities and their economies and should have access to the proper education and services in order to make informed decisions about their reproductive health—free from coercion.
“All providers must work together to create an equitable health care system that serves everyone and, as women’s health care providers, we will continue to use our platform and status in society to share our knowledge, time and resources to improve women’s health around the world. It is our responsibility to stand up against acts and policies that harm and disadvantage women and challenge gender inequity whenever we are confronted with it.
Sign the pledge to “#PressforProgress”.
About the signing organizations:
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) is the nation’s leading group of physicians providing health care for women. As a private, voluntary, nonprofit membership organization of more than 58,000 members, ACOG strongly advocates for quality health care for women, maintains the highest standards of clinical practice and continuing education of its members, promotes patient education and increases awareness among its members and the public of the changing issues facing women’s health care. www.acog.org
The AAGL (www.aagl.org) is the first and one of the largest organizations in the world dedicated to gynecologic endoscopic surgery. Founded in 1971, AAGL works to advance the safest and most efficacious diagnostic and therapeutic techniques that afford less invasive treatments for gynecologic conditions through the integration of clinical practice, research, and innovation. For the past 47 years, the organization has educated the world’s finest surgeons while improving the lives of women everywhere. For more information visit www.aagl.org.
ASRM is a multidisciplinary organization dedicated to the advancement of the science and practice of reproductive medicine. The Society accomplishes its mission through the pursuit of excellence in education and research and through advocacy on behalf of patients, physicians, and affiliated health care providers. The Society is committed to facilitating and sponsoring educational activities for the lay public and continuing medical education activities for professionals who are engaged in the practice of and research in reproductive medicine. www.asrm.org
The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) is the professional association that represents certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) in the United States. With roots dating to 1929, ACNM sets the standard for excellence in midwifery education and practice in the United States and strengthens the capacity of midwives in developing countries. ACNM’s members are primary care providers for women throughout the lifespan, with a special emphasis on pregnancy, childbirth, and gynecologic and reproductive health.
The Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics (APGO) is a nonprofit, membership-based organization for women’s health educators. Since 1963, APGO has promoted excellence in women’s health care by providing optimal resources and support to educators who inspire, instruct, develop, and empower women’s health care providers to improve the quality of life for all women.
Since 1969, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) has been the foremost authority promoting the health of women and newborns and strengthening the nursing profession through the delivery of superior advocacy, research, education, and other professional and clinical resources. AWHONN represents the interests of 350,000 registered nurses working in women's health, obstetric, and neonatal nursing across the United States. Learn more about AWHONN at www.awhonn.org.
The American Urogynecologic Society (AUGS), founded in 1979, is the premier non-profit organization representing more than 1,900 members including practicing physicians, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, nurses and health care professionals, as well as researchers from many disciplines, all dedicated to treating female pelvic floor disorders (pelvic organ prolapse and urinary incontinence). As the leader in female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, AUGS promotes the highest quality patient care through excellence in education, research and advocacy.
The National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health (NPWH) mission is to ensure the provision of quality primary and specialty health care to women of all ages by women’s health nurse practitioners and other women’s health focused providers. NPWH seeks to improve women’s access to primary and specialty health care, increase women’s wellness and health outcomes, decrease health disparities affecting women, enhance women’s access to and knowledge of health resources, and protect and promote women’s rights to make choices regarding their health within the context of their personal belief systems. NPWH provides advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) education and resources to increase clinical competencies, advocates for healthcare policies that support women and APRNs, and fosters evidence-based practice in women’s health through research, collaboration with strategic partners and mentoring opportunities. For more information, visit www.npwh.org.
The Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) is the premier medical specialty society for health care professionals trained in the comprehensive management of gynecologic cancers. As a 501(c)(6) organization, the SGO contributes to the advancement of women’s cancer care by encouraging research, providing education, raising standards of practice, advocating for patients and members and collaborating with other domestic and international organizations. SGO has 2,000 members representing the entire gynecologic oncology team in the United States and abroad. Members include primarily gynecologic oncologists, as well as medical oncologists, pathologists, radiation oncologists, hematologists, surgical oncologists, obstetrician/gynecologists, nurses, physician assistants, social workers, fellows-in-training, residents and other allied health care professionals interested in the treatment and care of women’s cancer. SGO members provide multidisciplinary cancer treatment including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery and supportive care. They practice in a variety of settings, including academic institutions and hospitals, major regional cancer centers and private practice.
The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (est. 1977) is a non-profit membership organization representing the interests of obstetricians/gynecologists who have additional formal education in maternal-fetal medicine. The Society is devoted to reducing high-risk pregnancy complications by providing continuing education to its more than 2,000 members on the latest pregnancy assessment and treatment methods. It also serves as an advocate for improving public policy and expanding research funding and opportunities for maternal-fetal medicine. SMFM hosts an annual scientific meeting in which new ideas and research in the area of maternal-fetal medicine are unveiled and discussed. For more information, visit www.smfm.org.