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Health Observances

The Office of Population Affairs observes designated days, weeks, and months, each connected to a reproductive health, adolescent health, or related preventive health theme or topic. Through these observances, OPA promotes awareness of reproductive and adolescent health issues and family planning practices.


Current Observances


November


Preterm birth is a leading cause of infant mortality. Learn what can be done to help prevent babies from being born too early.

Visit CDC’s page to learn more.


Past Observances


October


National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women. The good news is that most women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early.

Learn more about breast cancer, breast health, and how to stay healthy.


Health Literacy Awareness Month

Find information, tools, and links on health literacy research, practice, and evaluation for public health topics and situations.

Learn more about health literacy here.


Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Domestic and intimate partner violence are serious, preventable public health problems that affect millions of Americans.

Learn strategies to recognize and prevent violence.


National Latino AIDS Awareness Day – October 15

Find resources on HIV prevention, testing, and access to care for Latino/Hispanic communities.

Learn more about HIV and get resources.


September


Newborn Screening Awareness Month

Early detection, diagnosis, and intervention can prevent death or disability and enable children to reach their full potential.

Find out more about newborn screening.


Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

Ovarian cancer is one of several cancers that can affect the female reproductive system. Learn more about ovarian and other female reproductive cancers by exploring our fact sheet.

Get the facts.


PCOS Awareness Month

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common, but treatable, causes of infertility in women.

Learn more about the syndrome and treatment options.


Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month

Gynecologic cancers are cancers of women’s reproductive organs. All women are at risk for gynecologic cancers, and risk increases with age. Some gynecologic cancers are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), a very common sexually transmitted infection. A vaccine protects against the types of HPV that most often cause cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers.

Learn more about gynecologic, also known as female reproductive cancers.


National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day – September 27

Men who have sex with men are disproportionately affected by HIV. Learn more about the tools that can help prevent HIV in this population.

Get the facts now.


August


National Immunization Awareness Month

Use the power to protect against vaccine-preventable diseases.

August is National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM). This annual observance highlights the importance of protecting patients of all ages against vaccine-preventable diseases through on-time vaccination.

Get more information on vaccines.


National Breastfeeding Month

It’s National Breastfeeding Month. Breastfeeding is the best source of nutrition for most infants, and can also reduce the risk for some short- and long-term health conditions for both infants and mothers. Learn more about the health benefits of breastfeeding.

Visit the CDC’s breastfeeding page for information.


National Health Center Week

National Health Center Week. Rooted in Communication.

Community health centers do important work to protect and promote the health of America. This year’s National Health Center Week theme is America’s Health Centers: Rooted in Communities.

Use our Family Planning Clinic Locator to find a clinic near you.


July


Natural Family Planning Awareness Week

Learn about fertility awareness-based methods that help women and couples become more familiar with the menstrual cycle pattern to understand how to avoid pregnancy or become pregnant.

Get information about natural family planning.


June


Men’s Health Month

Learn about preventable diseases and the importance of early detection during Men’s Health Month.

Get information about men’s health.


National HIV Testing Day – June 27

National HIV Testing Day. June 27. 12pm

Help encourage HIV testing on National HIV Testing Day and every day to ensure people get tested for HIV, know their status, and get linked to care and treatment services.

Learn more about National HIV Testing Day.


May


Hepatitis Awareness Month

Hepatitis Awareness Month

Learn more about the different types of viral hepatitis and who should get tested or vaccinated.

Find out more about hepatitis B and explore our fact sheet on hepatitis C.


National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month

I Support National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month #NTPPM

National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month highlights the historic declines in the rates of teen births in the U.S. Significant declines have occurred in all 50 states and among all racial/ethnic groups, yet disparities continue.

Find out how to get involved.


Preeclampsia Awareness Month

Preeclampsia is a pregnancy-related high blood pressure disorder. With preeclampsia the mother’s high blood pressure reduces the blood supply to the fetus, which may get less oxygen and fewer nutrients.

Learn about preeclampsia and the risks, symptoms, and treatment options.


National Alcohol- and Other Drug-Related Birth Defects Awareness Week

Not all birth defects can be prevented but, women can increase their chances of having a healthy baby by managing health conditions and adopting healthy behaviors before becoming pregnant.

Learn about making healthy choices during pregnancy.


National Women’s Health Week

National Women's Health Week

Women face specific health challenges. It's never too early or late to work toward being your healthiest you. This National Women's Health Week, learn what you can do to lead a healthier life at any age.

Read more about the reproductive processes, functions, and system at all stages of life.


HIV Vaccine Awareness Day

HIV Vaccine Awareness Day. May 18th.

This day is a chance to thank the volunteers, community members, health professionals, and scientists working together to find a safe and effective preventive HIV vaccine.

View the HIV fact sheet.


Hepatitis Testing Day

National Hepatitis Testing Day. May 19th.

Millions of Americans have chronic viral hepatitis and most of them do not know they are infected. Hepatitis Testing Day is an opportunity to remind health care providers and the public who should be tested for viral hepatitis.

Find out more about hepatitis B and explore our fact sheet on hepatitis C.


National Asian & Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

National Asian & Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is part of a national campaign to end silence and shame about HIV/AIDS in Asian and Pacific Islander communities.

Learn more about HIV prevention and treatment.


April


National Minority Health Month: Active & Healthy

National Minority Health Month. Partnering for Health Equity | April 2018

National Minority Health Month highlights the importance of physical activity in helping people live healthier lives.

Join the Active & Healthy Challenge.


Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month

Sexual violence refers to sexual activity when consent is not obtained or not given freely. It can have lasting, harmful effects on victims and their family, friends, and communities. Learn more about risk factors and prevention strategies.

Find out how to prevent sexual violence before it begins.


STD Awareness Month: Talk. Test. Treat.

Talk. Test. Treat. is a campaign that encourages individuals and healthcare providers to take three simple actions – Talk. Test. Treat. – to protect their health, the health of their partners, and that of their patients.

Learn more about STD prevention.


National Public Health Week

Join the National Public Health Week celebration and become part of a growing movement to create the healthiest nation in one generation. National Public Health Week celebrates the power of prevention, advocates for healthy and fair policies, and champions the role of a strong public health system.

Get involved to change the future.


National Infertility Awareness Week

Infertility is not being able to get pregnant after one year (or longer) of unprotected sex. Both men and women can contribute to infertility. Many couples struggle with infertility and seek help to become pregnant.

Learn more about infertility, its causes, and treatment options.


National Infant Immunization Week

Immunization has the power to protect. Join hundreds of communities across the United States in celebrating the critical role vaccination plays in protecting children, communities, and public health.

Read more about immunizations.


National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day – April 10

One in four new HIV infections is among youth ages 13 to 24. Learn more about the impact of HIV/AIDS on youth and the work youth do to bolster the fight against the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Get information on how to prevent and treat HIV.


March


National Endometriosis Awareness Month

Endometriosis is especially common among women in their 30s and 40s. This often undiagnosed condition may make it harder to become pregnant.

Learn about endometriosis.


Women’s History Month

During Women’s History Month, take time to learn more about women’s reproductive health.

Explore these women’s health resources.


International HPV Awareness Day – March 4

HPV, or human papillomavirus, is the most common STD, and responsible for virtually all cases of cervical cancer. Though the association between cervical cancer and HPV is irrefutable, HPV can also cause several other types of cancer, including anal, oral, vaginal, vulvar, and penile cancers. The HPV vaccine protects against the types of HPV that most often cause cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers.

Learn more about HPV.


National Women & Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day – March 10

Women and girls still face unique challenges in preventing HIV. Approximately 180,000 sexually active U.S. women of reproductive age are potential candidates for PrEP, but awareness and uptake of PrEP among women at risk for HIV has been limited. OPA’s new guide can help Title X-funded family planning service sites make evidence-informed decisions about their role in assuring access to PrEP services in their communities.

Download the guide.


National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day – March 20

As many as 26 percent of the American Indian and Alaska Native people living with HIV infection do not know they have it. Learn more from the Indian Health Service HIV/AIDS program and get involved with HIV/AIDS prevention.

Find out about HIV prevention and treatment.

February


American Heart Month

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for American women and men. During American Hearth Month, learn about heart healthy lifestyles.

Get more information.


Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month

Unhealthy relationships can start early and last a lifetime. It is important to understand and recognize the signs of teen dating violence.

Learn about healthy relationships and how to prevent teen dating violence.


National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day – February 7

Almost five out of every ten new HIV infections in the U.S. occurs in Blacks. Get educated, get tested, get involved, and get treated.

Learn more about HIV/AIDs by exploring our fact sheet.

January


Cervical Cancer Awareness Month

Cervical cancer can almost always be prevented. The HPV vaccine can prevent 9 out of 10 cases of cervical cancer. Take time this month to learn about prevention, screening, and treatment.

Learn more about cervical cancer.


National Birth Defects Prevention Month

About one in every 33 babies is born with a birth defect. Learn about the steps that can increase a woman’s chance of having a baby with the best health possible.

Learn more about preventing birth defects.


National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

Truth. Of the 20.9 million victims of human trafficking globally, 68% forced labor. 22% sexually exploited. 10% state-imposed forced labor

In addition to being a violent crime, human trafficking is a public health concern that impacts individuals, families, and entire communities across generations.

Find out how everyone can make a difference.


December


World AIDS Day – December 1

World AIDS Day. December 1.

Learn more about HIV and AIDS, including what you can do to reduce your risk.

Get the facts about HIV and AIDS.


National Influenza Vaccination Week

It's not too late. FIGHT FLU.

An annual flu vaccine is the best way to protect against this potentially serious disease.

Read more about the importance of the flu vaccine.


 

Content created by Office of Population Affairs
Content last reviewed on November 1, 2019