HRSA Programs Related to Women's Health
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is the Federal agency responsible for improving access to health care services for people who are uninsured, isolated or medically vulnerable. HRSA’s mission, “To improve health and achieve health equity through access to quality services, a skilled health workforce and innovative programs,” supports the Affordable Care Act which will provide Americans with better health security, expand health insurance coverage, and enhance the quality of care.
- HRSA’s Office of Women’s Health (OWH) is the agency lead for women’s health policy and programming. OWH engages with Bureaus and Offices to enhance HRSA programs through collaborations focusing on reducing sex and gender- based disparities and supporting the HRSA mission. Priorities include violence prevention coordination; mobile health; and the HRSA-supported Women’s Preventive Health Service Guidelines under the Affordable Care Act. In 2013, the office launched the “Care Counts: Educating Women and Families Challenge” to support enrollment in the health insurance marketplace.
- The Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) supports access to comprehensive women’s health care to improve their health across the life course through the Title V MCH Block Grant, Home Visiting, and Healthy Start Programs. MCHB is focused on reducing maternal morbidity and mortality through the integration of the life course model by addressing women’s health before, during, and after pregnancy. The Bureau is also supporting the provisions under the Affordable Care Act to promote primary preventive health services for women, primarily through its community-based Home Visiting and Healthy Start programs.
- The HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) provides resources and services for individuals living with HIV/AIDS through the Ryan White Program; Part D specifically addresses the needs of women, infants, children and youth, and their families. HAB funds two Special Projects of National Significance (SPNS) which include Enhancing Access to and Retention in Quality HIV/AIDS Care for Women of Color and Enhancing Engagement and Retention in Quality HIV Care for Transgender Women of Color. Given the intersection between interpersonal violence and HIV/AIDS, HAB grantees with significant numbers of female clients are more likely to provide screening, counseling, and referrals to domestic violence and shelter services.
- The Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC) aims to improve the health of the Nation’s underserved communities and vulnerable populations by assuring access to comprehensive, culturally competent, and quality primary health care services. In 2012, BPHC-supported health centers served 9 million women aged 18 and older, representing 63 percent of all health center patients aged 18 and older. Find more on Women Served by Community Health Centers.
- The Bureau of Clinician Recruitment and Service (BCRS) administers the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) and NURSE Corps programs, which provide loan repayment and scholarships to clinicians working in underserved communities. The NHSC consists of nearly 10,000 clinicians in practice or in training. Nearly 62 percent of NHSC in practice and nearly 71 percent of NHSC students are female. The NURSE Corps has about 3,250 registered and advanced practice nurses in practice or in training. More than 62 percent of NURSE Corps in practice and nearly 85 percent of NURSE Corps students are female.
- The Bureau of Health Professions (BHPr) provides policy leadership and health professions training grants in support of workforce quality and culturally appropriate care in medically underserved areas. Initiatives include promoting interprofessional teams and integrating population health into training programs. BHPr supports women’s health continuing education programs and discipline-specific degree and residency programs to address early detection and prevention across the life span on topics such as prenatal health, breastfeeding, breast and cervical cancer.