Substantive health care information is now a phone call or a mouse click away. The U.S. Public Health Service has announced the launch of the National Women’s Health Information Center (NWHIC), which features a toll-free hotline (1-800-994-WOMAN) and a Web site www.4woman.gov.
“This information center represents the federal government’s most comprehensive resource for women’s health,” HHS Secretary Donna E. Shalala said. “With a few strokes on a computer keyboard, or a toll-free call, women and their health care providers can open the door to a world of important medical information resources.”
Callers of the toll-free number are connected to a health information specialist trained to refer the caller to needed sources of information. The Web site contains links to over 1,000 Web sites maintained by federal agencies and government-screened private sector organizations. A section of FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) has also been compiled on top health issues of concern to American women.
“This new service represents the fastest and easiest way to locate important information on women’s health,” said David Satcher, M.D., Surgeon General and Assistant Secretary for Health in the Department of Health and Human Services. “Because the service is available through the Internet or via a toll-free number, women in every corner of America will now have access to accurate and timely health information.”
Dr. Wanda Jones is director of the Public Health Service’s Office on Women’s Health, which sponsors and maintains the Information Center. She said, “Women today are inundated with health information from a variety of media sources. It is comforting to know that there is now one reliable place to go for information that can be trusted.”