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May 15th, 2013

Obama on National Women’s Health Week

President Barack Obama

A proclamation by the President of the United States of America:

Since our Nation’s founding, women have given their all to expanding opportunity for their families and for future generations. Decade after decade, that fierce dedication has been rewarded with remarkable progress in nearly every part of society; yet all too often, advances in women’s health and well-being have lagged behind. During National Women’s Health Week, we recommit to changing that reality and increasing access to health services that help women and girls get the care they need.

Three years ago, I signed the Affordable Care Act - an important step in reform that brought about a new era of equality in health care and gave women unprecedented control over their health options. Under the law, women will no longer face higher insurance premiums because of their gender. It will be illegal for insurers to deny coverage due to pre-existing conditions like pregnancy or cancer. Already, 47 million women have gained access to preventive services at no out-of-pocket cost to them, including well-woman visits, domestic violence screenings and counseling, and contraceptive care. And millions more are benefitting from improved prescription drug coverage under Medicare that helps senior citizens get the medication they sorely need at prices they can afford.

These changes are making a very real difference for families in every part of our country. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, working mothers no longer have to choose between getting essential care and paying their bills. Women no longer have to delay mammograms just because money is tight. And young people can stay on their parent’s health insurance until age 26, so they no longer have to worry about how they will be able to afford health care when they are just starting out.

I encourage women of all ages to go online and visit,, and to learn more information about the resources available to them, including the new Health Insurance Marketplace.

This week, as we reflect on how far we have come in the ongoing fight to provide all Americans with the care they deserve, let us renew our commitment to empowering all women with the chance to live strong, healthy lives. We are a nation of many, but we are at our strongest when we join together as one.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim May 12 through May 18, 2013, as National Women’s Health Week. I encourage all Americans to celebrate the progress we have made in protecting women’s health and to promote awareness, prevention, and educational activities that improve the health of all women.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this tenth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand thirteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-seventh.

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