30 Achievements in Women's Health in 30 Years (1984 – 2014)

Women wearing pink shirts

Decrease in breast cancer deaths

Today, fewer American women are dying from breast cancer. In the past 10 years, the death rates from breast cancer have dropped an average of 1.9% per year, while the rate of breast cancer diagnoses has been stable. Federally funded research, increased screening, and new and improved treatments have saved lives and improved women's quality of life when they are confronted with a breast cancer diagnosis.

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Woman breaking a cigarette in half

Decrease in smoking rates for women

Today millions more women are smoke-free than 30 years ago. In 1985, 28% of adult women in the United States reported smoking. In 2012, that percentage had dropped to 16% of adult women.

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Man leaning in to kiss woman

Decrease in teen pregnancy

Teen mothers and their infants are at increased risk for lifelong health problems and social and economic challenges. Today the U.S. teen birth rate is at an all-time low. Since 1991, the rates of teen pregnancy have dropped by half. In 2013, the CDC reported that birth rates for U.S. teens 15-19 years old dropped to a record low not seen since 1946. This decline in teen pregnancies crossed all races and ethnicities.

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Woman preparing to get an injection

Cervical cancer prevention and screening

Every year, about 12,000 women in the United States are diagnosed with cervical cancer. Most cases of cervical cancer are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is passed from person to person through sexual contact. HPV infection usually goes away on its own, but if it does not, it can lead to cervical cancer if left untreated.

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Woman holding an AIDS ribbon

Decrease in HIV/AIDS deaths in women

The CDC identified the first case of AIDS in the United States in 1981. By 1994, AIDS was the leading cause of death for all Americans (men and women) ages 25 to 44. Today 25% of people living with HIV in the United States are women. HIV/AIDS remains among the 10 leading causes of death for black women ages 15 to 59 and Hispanic/Latina women ages 30 to 49. Although HIV/AIDS affects more African-American women and Latinas compared with other women, new HIV infections among black women have decreased since 2008.

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