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6 Trailblazing American Women Transforming Health

6 Trailblazing American Women Transforming Health

Womens Health Month Nurses to Know

In honor of Women’s Health Month, here’s a list of powerful women making strides in healthcare and medicine.

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Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman in the United States to earn a medical degree in 1849. She established the New York Dispensary for Poor Women and Children in 1853, now NewYork-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan Hospital. Her pioneering work laid the foundation for women in medicine today.

Mary Edwards Walker was the first female surgeon in the US Army, treating soldiers during the Civil War, and is the only woman to receive the Medal of Honor. Her legacy as a medical pioneer is inspiring and enduring.

Henrietta Lacks‘ cells, taken without her knowledge in 1950, were found to be “virtually immortal” and became the basis for the HeLa cell line. These cells are crucial in medical research today, and her story has led to significant medical ethics reforms.

Regina M. Benjamin, born in Mobile, Alabama, served as the 18th Surgeon General of the United States during the Obama administration. She has been recognized for her dedication to improving American medicine and advancing rural health.

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Mary Guinan is a leader in disease research, having worked on smallpox vaccinations in India and played a crucial role at the CDC during the HIV/AIDS epidemic. She has also been involved in research on Ebola and H1N1, and received the “Elizabeth Blackwell Award” in 2014.

Nina Shah, a hematologist and professor at UCSF, is a leader in CAR T cell therapy for treating blood marrow cancers. Her work is bringing us closer to a cure for cancer, and for that, she deserves our deepest gratitude.

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