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EndoFound to Be Present in Washington, D.C., on Thursday as Endometriosis CARE Act Is Reintroduced

By William Croyle


Dr. Dan Martin, EndoFound’s scientific and medical director, will represent the organization on Thursday, May 23, at a press conference and reception in Washington, D.C., reintroducing the Endometriosis CARE Act.

The press conference will be at 11 A.M. in the Triangle, an area across from the House steps on the east front side of the U.S. Capitol. The reception will be at 6 P.M. in the Congressional Visitor’s Center.

The Endometriosis CARE (Coverage, Awareness, Research, and Education) Act was introduced to the House in 2022 by Illinois Rep. Lauren Underwood. Key points of the bill were for Congress to invest $30 million a year in endometriosis research through the National Institutes of Health, identify barriers to accessing treatments for endometriosis symptoms, and establish a national campaign to promote public awareness about endometriosis. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and introduced in the House but stalled there.

The 2024 version of the CARE ACT calls for annual five-year investments starting next year. The investments include $50 million in research “to improve treatment options and develop a cure for endometriosis,” $2 million for public endometriosis education, $2 million for the dissemination of endometriosis information to health care providers, and $500,000 for an endometriosis disparities study.

Reps. Underwood, Nikema Williams of Georgia, Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon of Puerto Rico, and Alma Adams of North Carolina are leading the reintroduction of the bill. Dr. Martin is slated to speak briefly at the press conference about the disease, including how it affects patients’ lives.

“Fifty million dollars is an excellent investment in women’s health care,” Dr. Martin said. “We need more money for research and to break down the barriers that interfere with a patient’s access. Awareness is part of that, as are the demographic disparities we see with this disease.”

Newfound awareness and funding have been brought to endometriosis in recent years at state and federal levels, including a New York state law in 2019 to make materials on menstrual health and endometriosis available to school districts and medical practitioners statewide, the first such law in any state; the creation of the House Endometriosis Caucus by former Iowa Rep. Abby Finkenauer in 2019; and legislation in 2021 directing the National Institute for Child and Human Development to allocate at least $26 million toward endometriosis research.

“To have these lawmakers who will commit to this cause, who will push for change, is pivotal for the future of endometriosis,” said Diana Falzone, EndoFound ambassador and journalist. “The pain of this disease that stops a person’s life is not acceptable, and it hasn’t been acceptable for decades. But now, here we are in 2024, and these lawmakers are taking the initiative to say enough is enough.”

EndoFound and roughly 60 other organizations, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the Society for Women's Health Research, and the NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice endorsed the CARE Act in 2022. Thursday’s press conference is expected to reveal more supporting organizations and details on the 2024 effort.