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Senator Hassan and Other Women Senators Rally to Introduce Historic New Bipartisan Legislation to Boost Menopause Research, Expand Training and Awareness Around Menopause


Washington, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Susan Collins (R-ME), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) introduced historic, comprehensive new bipartisan legislation that would be the most expansive effort so far to boost federal research on menopause and would—for the first time—coordinate the federal government’s existing programs related to menopause and mid-life women’s health. The Advancing Menopause and Mid-Life Women’s Health Act, authorized at $275 million over five years, would strengthen and expand federal research on menopause, health care workforce training, awareness and education efforts, and public health promotion and prevention to better address menopause and mid-life women’s health issues. The legislation is being championed by Halle Berry, who has done extensive advocacy around menopause, speaking out and sharing her story to challenge the stigma around menopause. In the Senate, the legislation is also co-sponsored by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Tina Smith (D-MN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), and Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ).

75 million women are in perimenopause, menopause, or post-menopause right now in the U.S.—with 6,000 more women reaching menopause each day. But despite the fact that half the population in the U.S. will eventually experience menopause, menopause research has long been underinvested in and overlooked. To date, there are few federally funded clinical trials on menopause and menopausal hormone therapy and very little menopause education for doctors—only 30 percent of U.S. residency programs offer a formal menopause curriculum according to a recent survey, and 80 percent of OB-GYN residents admit to being ill-prepared to discuss menopause.

“For too long, menopause is something women have had to suffer through silently—like so many women’s health issues, menopause has been overlooked, underinvested in, and left behind,” said Senator Murray. “Our new legislation would boost funding for menopause research and give federal agencies new tools to better study and improve mid-life women’s health—building on the Biden Administration’s Women’s Health Research Initiative and further improving the federal landscape for menopause research and treatment.”

“Women should not have to face menopause alone, nor should we accept a status quo that treats menopause—which half the population will experience—as something to be swept under the rug. Menopause is a key part of women’s health that deserves serious attention and investment,” continued Senator Murray. “This bill will help empower the federal government, the public, and health care providers to better understand women’s mid-life health issues and improve every woman’s experience of menopause—this really matters. I’m so glad to have Senator Murkowski and Halle Berry leading this effort with me, and I look forward to getting our bipartisan legislation across the finish line.”

“Menopause is a significant part of every woman’s life – and despite how severe the symptoms can be, there’s been very little research on the subject,” said Senator Lisa Murkowski. “This legislation I’m leading alongside Senator Murray, with support from countless advocates in Alaska and around the country, is an important step towards closing the gap in research for women’s health. It is time for us to extend our research focus to be inclusive of women of all ages.”

“While half of Americans will experience menopause in their lifetime, many women are forced to suffer in silence with sometimes debilitating symptoms and limited options for treatment,” said Senator Baldwin. “I’m proud to stand with my Democratic and Republican colleagues to introduce legislation that makes a long overdue investment in menopause research, helping us better understand and treat the symptoms of menopause for millions of Americans.”

“There is a real need for additional research and better education regarding the health challenges and symptoms associated with Menopause,” said Senator Collins. “This bipartisan bill would help close this gap and support midlife health for women across our country.”

“Menopause is a fact of life for women and something we all deserve to know more about,” Senator Capito said. “Menopause can impact every aspect of a woman’s life – from their career to their relationships—and for too long, it has only been whispered about among our friends and health care providers. I’m proud to join my fellow female colleagues in introducing this bipartisan bill, which seeks to jump-start research, public health, and training programs to look at the realities women are facing every day.”

“Menopause happens to roughly half of us, but there has been far too little research focused on this pivotal development in women’s lives,” said Senator Klobuchar. “This bipartisan legislation will expand federal investments into research, awareness, and education efforts to improve the daily lives of women across the country. We must invest more in understanding the health of women.”

“This is an important investment in women’s health,” said Senator Stabenow. “This bipartisan legislation will give us a better understanding of the health issues for women at this phase of their lives and a better quality of life for so many women.”

“For too long, health care for women going through menopause has been overlooked in health research and medical education, despite it affecting half of our population,” said Senator Hassan. “It’s great to join my colleagues and advocates like Halle Berry to help introduce this bipartisan legislation to strengthen federal research, raise public awareness about midlife women’s health, expand training for providers, and much more. If we believe that everyone in our country counts, then we need to treat women’s health care, including during menopause, with the seriousness that it deserves."

“Menopause isn’t a secret. 100% of women will go through it, all over the world,” said Senator Smith. “The research into menopause and mid-life women’s issues is severely lacking, and this bill is the first step to addressing and fixing the problem. I am proud to join my colleagues to introduce this important legislation.”

“It’s unfathomable that menopause – a condition that more than half the population will eventually experience – has been stigmatized, overlooked, and understudied for decades,” said Senator Gillibrand. “I’m proud to be introducing this legislation to give menopause research the funding and attention it deserves and help keep women healthy throughout their lives.”

“By advocating for my own health and wellbeing during menopause, I am not only standing up for myself but for all women,” said Halle Berry. “Because, if we are fortunate enough to live this long, we will all experience this phase of life. Today is a call to action for each and every one of us to stand together and demand the care and attention that we so vitally deserve.”

The Advancing Menopause and Mid-Life Women’s Health Act would:

  1. Expand federal research on menopause and mid-life women’s health:
    1. Authorize $25 million per year over five fiscal years for NIH to award grants to support biomedical, public health, clinical, and translational research and innovation related to menopause and mid-life women’s health.
    2. Establish new Research, Condition, and Disease Categorization (RCDC) categories for chronic or debilitating conditions among women related to menopause and mid-life women’s health.
    3. Strengthen coordination within the NIH and across HHS to expand federal research into menopause and mid-life women’s health and prevent adverse health outcomes among women experiencing menopause and postmenopausal syndrome.
    4. Support translational research activities to speed the translation of federal research to support health care delivery of perimenopause and menopause care and related women’s health services.
    5. Require HHS to expand public health research, health care quality research, data collection and reporting, and occupational health research related to menopause and mid-life women’s health.
  1. Support public health promotion activities to address chronic conditions affecting mid-life women’s health, strengthen early detection, diagnosis, and treatment of menopausal symptoms; improve health care delivery; and support the development of recommendations and best practices to expand access to mental and behavioral health care services for women experiencing perimenopause or menopausal symptoms. Authorized at $10 million per year over five fiscal years.
  2. Establish a national public health awareness, education, and outreach program on menopause and mid-life women’s health. Authorized at $10 million per year over five fiscal years.
  3. Improve professional training resources for health care providers on menopause and mid-life women’s health through a new grant program. Authorized at $10 million per year over five fiscal years.
  4. Direct the designation of Centers of Excellence in Menopause and Mid-Life Women’s Health, and authorize grants to support the improvement of professional training resources for health care providers on menopause and mid-life women’s health.
  5. Require HHS to report to Congress on federal research activities related to menopause and mid-life women’s health, related barriers to care for patients in rural and underserved areas; barriers to training for health care providers, and recommendations to expand access to care and increase public awareness.­­
  6. Support coordination between HHS and other federal departments and agencies—including the VA and DoD—related to menopausal symptoms, mid-life women’s health, again, and public health promotion activities.

A one-pager on the Advancing Menopause and Mid-Life Women’s Health Act is HERE.

The full text of the legislation is HERE.