What is U3?

The United States ranks lower than other high-income countries in terms of health and health care equity.  Health care inequities in the U.S. are particularly evident in the disproportionate burden of disease and adverse health outcomes experienced by women of underrepresented racial and ethnic communities, women in economically disadvantaged groups, women who live in underserved rural populations, and women of sexual and gender minority groups. Despite the need for research to understand and reduce these inequities, women of these populations remain largely Understudied, Underrepresented, and Underreported in biomedical research. 

The U3 framework was developed by ORWH to draw attention to the lack of research on persistent disparities in women’s health and healthcare and to support research and evidence-based programs to address this gap. The U3 program also highlights the intersectional experiences of women, exploring the ways in which socially determined categories – like race and gender – overlap and interact to create different outcomes for individuals and communities.

For biomedical research to best benefit the whole population, the research participant population should reflect the diversity of the patient population. However, many clinical studies continue to underrepresent women of color and other underserved populations. ORWH’s U3 Administrative Supplement provides support for NIH researchers from a variety of disciplines who are committed to advancing health equity by bringing women of U3 populations into focus within the research lens.

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Women of underrepresented groups have been historically excluded from and are often overlooked by biomedical research. Until recently, many research populations consisted of mostly White and male participants.

Learn More: U3 Fact Sheet
NIH Inclusion Policies

NIH's inclusion policies help ensure the inclusion of women, minorities, and individuals of all ages in research.

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U3 Interdisciplinary Research Supplement

This administrative supplement program is available for NIH researchers with active grants.

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