Flash flood. (Letters).Alicia Mundy's article ("Hot Flash, Cold Cash," January/February) mischaracterizes the goals and ignores the accomplishments of the Society for Women's HeaLth Research The Society for Women’s Health Research (SWHR) is a non-profit organization in the United States whose mission is to improve the health of all women through research, education and advocacy. , using innuendo innuendo n. from Latin innuere, "to nod toward." In law it means "an indirect hint." "Innuendo" is used in lawsuits for defamation (libel or slander), usually to show that the party suing was the person about whom the nasty statements were made or why the comments and misstatements to inaccurately portray the organization.
The real story is that the Society has successfully fought for policy and scientific changes to advance medical research. Our advocacy efforts to routinely include women in clinical trials and analyze research data by sex have provided vital new information to improve women's health Women's Health Definition
Women's health is the effect of gender on disease and health that encompasses a broad range of biological and psychosocial issues. . The Society helped achieve increased women's health-research funding, initiated a landmark Institute of Medicine report on analyzing data by sex, and continues to educate women about health issues that previously received no attention.
The Society is extremely successful both financially and legislatively at accomplishing long-range goals. Like other not-for-profit health organizations, the Society accepts individual, foundation, government, and corporate (who do a significant percentage of research in the U.S.) support for scientific meetings, advocacy, and public education programs.
While the Society's primary focus is on sex differences and clinical trials, we did comment on the Women's Health Initiative Women's Health Initiative A 15-yr, $628 million project involving 1. An observational study of the health habits and medical Hx of ±100,000 ♀ 2. because of its significance to women. Our position is similar to those of the American College American College is the name of:
named after North America.
North American blastomycosis
see North American blastomycosis.
North American cattle tick
see boophilusannulatus. Menopause Association, and the Association of Reproductive Health Within the framework of WHO's definition of health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, reproductive health, or sexual health/hygiene Professionals. Our statements and testimony as well as all our position papers, press releases, and reports are readily available on our Web site at www.womens-health.org.
DENISE FAUSTMAN, M.D., PH.D. Board Chair, Society for Women's Health Research; Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Director, Immunology Laboratory, Mass. General Hospital
I believe Alicia Mundy's article unjustly portrays Phyllis Greenberger and the Society for Women's Health Research, and, by extension, undermines the credibility of a vast number of not-for-profit health and patient-advocacy organizations. The Society is a hardworking nonprofit group that draws upon the leadership of some of the most distinguished scientists and authorities on women's health in the nation. For instance, it was the Society that urged the National Institutes of Health to properly study the effects of new medications on women and to boost the role of women as health-research professionals.
I look forward to the Society for Women's Health Research, with Phyllis Greenberger at the helm, continuing to lead the way in advancing and disseminating accurate and useful health information for women across our country.
DANIEL PERRY Executive Director, Alliance for Aging Research, Washington, D.C.
Bravo to a long-overdue, in-depth article on the problems that inevitably follow when a nonprofit advocacy organization accepts too much funding from the pharmaceutical industry. On a number of occasions, I have been struck by how the comments or positions taken by the Society for Women's Health Research's president have been biased strongly in favor of industry interests rather than consumer interests.
For example, when a cheaper, plant-based estrogen came up for approval--with thorough scientific testing and FDA FDA
Food and Drug Administration
n.pr See Food and Drug Administration.
n.pr the abbreviation for the Food and Drug Administration. scientist endorsement of its equivalent efficacy in comparison to Premarin--the Society for Women's Health Research opposed its approval. In May 1996, Phyllis Greenberger told The New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of Times, "The real issue is to promote research, and the scientific community feels strongly that the opportunity to patent motivates research ... This should be resolved by the scientific community. I'm sure they have good intentions, but I don't see why Gloria Steinem Noun 1. Gloria Steinem - United States feminist (born in 1934)
Steinem and Betty Friedan Noun 1. Betty Friedan - United States feminist who founded a national organization for women (born in 1921)
Betty Naomi Friedan, Betty Naomi Goldstein Friedan, Friedan should be talking about patenting genes." Advocacy organizations that truly serve in the public's interest try to create a more informed lay public--by encouraging the participation of leaders like Steinem, as well as the participation of everyone capable of careful consideration of even complex issues. We leave these debates solely to the scientific community and industry interests at our own peril.
JUDY NORSIGIAN Executive Director, Our Bodies, Ourselves, Boston, Mass.
Thanks very much for your important article about the Society for Women's Health Research's conflicts of interest. While SWHR SWHR Society for Women's Health Research was once an effective and important voice for women's health, my own organization has repeatedly seen the group kowtow to corporate sponsors. For example, several former breast-implant manufacturers are involved with the organization. In October 1996, during the heat of court activity with these companies, SWHR hosted an event at the National Press Club to dispel questions about the safety of the implants. Dow Corning Dow Corning is a multinational corporation headquartered in Midland, Michigan, USA. Dow Corning specializes in silicon and silicone-based technology, offering more than 7,000 products and services. Dow Corning is equally owned by The Dow Chemical Company and Corning, Inc. and Bristol Myers Squibb representatives actively worked the press at the event, although there was no similar attendance by women's health groups.
Even manufacturers and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration acknowledge that silicone and saline breast implants Breast Implants Definition
Breast implantation is a surgical procedure for enlarging the breast. Breast-shaped sacks made of a silicone outer shell and filled with silicone gel or saline (salt water), called implants, are used. have high product failure rates and severe complications. It's a shame that SWHR, founded as an advocate of cutting-edge women's health research, has not been able to do the same.
SYBIL NIDEN GOLDRICH Command Trust Network via email
Three cheers for Alicia Mundy and her article exposing in almost frightening detail the extent to which the women's health agenda is being driven--through organizations like the Society for Women's Health Research--by companies whose bottom line depends on selling women things they may not need.
The women's-health movement in general, and the breast-cancer community in particular, is increasingly being funded by companies whose interest is more in profits than in women's lives. A passing look at the list of funders for most breast-cancer organizations reveals a number of companies that produce cancer drugs, including Astra Zeneca, the principal corporate sponsor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month activities in October, and Myriad Genetics, the patent holder on breast-cancer genetic testing Genetic Testing Definition
A genetic test examines the genetic information contained inside a person's cells, called DNA, to determine if that person has or will develop a certain disease or could pass a disease to his or her offspring. . From genetic testing to mammography mammography, diagnostic procedure that uses low-dose X rays to detect abnormalities in the breasts. The early diagnosis of breast cancer made possible by the routine use of mammography for screening women increases a woman's treatment alternatives and improves her screening, and from new treatments to pills for breast-cancer "prevention" and beyond, pharmaceutical companies are influencing what many breast-cancer organizations say and do.
Breast Cancer Action is the only national breast cancer organization that expressly refuses to accept funds from businesses that profit from cancer. When we have something to say, you don't need to wonder who paid us to say it.
BARBARA A. BRENNER Executive Director, Breast Cancer Action San Francisco, Calif.