The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has partnered with several health organizations to develop new recommendations for women's preventive health care, according to a press release from the organization.
With a focus of advancing the well-being of women in the United States, ACOG, along with the American College of Physicians (ACP), American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and the National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women's Health (NPWH), will update the Women's Preventive Service Guidelines. The organizations will also be joined by a multidisciplinary work group of women's health experts.
“[ACOG] is working with the best of the best in women’s health care to build upon and update the Women’s Preventive Services Guidelines," Jeanne Conry, MD, PhD, ACOG past president, said in the release. "We look forward to our continued work with the coalition to ensure women in our country are offered the best preventive care at a low cost.”
According to the release, the guidelines, which were initially developed in 2011 by the Institute of Medicine, are an essential part of the Affordable Care Act, serving as the basis for insurance coverage and helping physicians to identify the screenings and preventive services that they should provide for patients.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is part of the steering committee associated with the guidelines update. ACOG stated that it plans to base its process on the approach AAP used to develop its Bright Futures guidelines for the well-being of children and adolescents.
"Prevention is at the core of health and well-being," Benard P. Dreyer, MD, FAAP, AAP president, said in the release. "Children, adolescents, and adults do best when we as a medical community can come together and prioritize health throughout the life course, which is what this grant represents. AAP looks forward to working closely with ACOG to draw from our Bright Futures guidelines and provide adolescent medical expertise to help inform the process."
The Human Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has awarded ACOG about $950,000 annually for 5 years to update the guidelines and develop additional women's health care recommendations.
As stated in the release, HRSA expects that the Women's Preventive Service Guidelines will be "developed by women’s health experts to meet women’s unique preventive health needs throughout their lives; designed to preserve the clinician-patient relationship and allow patients to consult with their clinicians on what services are best-suited for them; and focused on gaps in current preventive services guidelines addressing women’s health."
ACP and AAFP expressed their commitment to women's health care and their pride in working on the specific recommendations.
"ACP is committed to helping internal medicine physicians provide high quality preventive care to women throughout their lives," Nitin Damle, MD, MS, FACP, ACP president, said in the release. "We look forward to working with other health professional organizations to review and update the HRSA-sponsored Women’s Preventive Services Guidelines."
"Family physicians are a major provider of primary care to women, so it is essential that we are at the table to review these recommendations," Douglas E. Henley, MD, FAAFP, executive vice president and CEO of AAFP, said in the release. "We're committed to providing guidance to our members based on a rigorous evaluation of evidence, and we bring that same commitment to our role on the Women's Preventive Services Initiative advisory panel. We look forward to working on this grant with our colleague associations to ensure that women in America receive the most current, evidence-based, cost-effective preventive care."