What is the purpose of Women’s Health and You (WHY)?

WHY was established to increase participation of women in clinical research, improve women’s health for ourselves, our daughters, our granddaughters, and generations beyond. WHY has an expanded focus on women’s lives and how experiences influence health. Health is so much more than records of physical condition. What is missing from other large studies is what happens in the rest of women’s lives, WHY fills this gap.

If you have not received  an annual survey invitation in 2016, you are not an active WHY member. Use this link to complete an updated survey to join.

how do i tell if i'm a why member?

Women have unique life and health experiences. Participating will help grow our understanding of the specific health needs of women. For more information about sex differences in health research, check out this segment on 60 Minutes.

Why join WHY?

Anyone 18 years and older can join WHY. You do not need to be a resident of Kentucky.

Who can join WHY?

what do I have to do to join?


Joining WHY is easy and takes a few minutes. You just visit the following survey link and provide your basic information.  The initial survey takes less than 10 minutes to complete. Before you begin to answer questions we ask that you read the informed consent materials and decide whether you agree to participate.

what is expected of me?



Once you give your consent, you will be asked to answer some questions on an electronic survey. We have re-designed the survey to be user-friendly and easy to complete. Surveys are divided into pieces (modules) to make them easier to complete. You’ll be asked basic information about you as well as items about your health, lifestyle, and medical history. You do not have to answer all the questions. Our hope is that members will return to WHY to help us better understand women’s health issues over time.

After completing your short initial (baseline) survey, you will be eligible to complete other modules. We will also contact you annually to update your initial survey. For participants who choose to, we will contact you about ongoing research studies in women’s health that may be of interest. 

what happens after i join why?

is my information confidential?

Absolutely. All survey data and contact information is stored in a secured site, behind a firewall, in password protected databases. 

To help us protect your privacy, we have obtained a Certificate of Confidentiality from the National Institutes of Health. The researchers can use this Certificate to legally refuse to disclose information that may identify you in any federal, state, or local civil, criminal, administrative, legislative, or other proceedings, for example, if there is a court subpoena. The researchers will use the Certificate to resist any demands for information that would identify you, except as explained below.

You should understand that a Certificate of Confidentiality does not prevent you or a member of your family from voluntarily releasing information about yourself or your involvement in this research. If an insurer, employer, or other person obtains your written consent to receive research information, then the researchers may not use the Certificate to withhold that information.

The Certificate of Confidentiality will not be used to prevent disclosure to state or local authorities of child abuse and neglect, or harm to self or others.

We are a research study that is based at UK. This means that everything that WHY does is reviewed and approved by the UK Institutional Review Board (IRB) or ethics board. UK faculty and staff conduct all research activities.

how is why connected to the university of kentucky (UK)?

This is a research study. The University of Kentucky Institutional Review Board (also known as an IRB or Ethics board) approves and regulates all research studies at UK. The consent form outlines the study in detail and lets you know your role and what your rights are as a participant in the study.

why do i have to agree to a consent form?

Yes, but we do not share this with anyone.  We need this information for future contact.



do i have to give personal information like my name, email address, and date of birth?  

Email is the primary way we communicate with our members. You will receive periodic requests for additional opportunities to complete new modules or about opportunities to participate in research studies. 

How often will I receive emails from WHY?

You can update your contact information at any time by emailing WHY@uky.edu or, you will have the opportunity to update your information when you complete the annual survey.

What if my contact information has changed?

There is currently no end date. You may decide that you no longer wish to participate if so, you can email us at WHY@uky.edu

when does the study end?

You will have the opportunity to unsubscribe from email communication on your annual survey.  New annual survey links will be available each fall.

what if i want to unsubscribe to emails?

Please do your best to select an answer option that best describes your situation. You also have the option to skip or not answer a question that you cannot answer or do not feel comfortable answering. Please feel free to contact us if you have a suggestion for items or to improve WHY.


what do i do if i am answering a question and do not see the answer that represents me?

By email: WHY@uky.edu

By phone: 859-218-4869

how can i contact why?

If i join why will i receive health care services?

No. Participation in WHY does not lead to direct access to any medical services or advice, nor does it endorse or provide any medical or healthcare product. If you have any questions about your healthcare, please talk to your doctor.

No you will not be paid to participate. WHY relies entirely on volunteers. However, your participation in WHY provides access to research studies that may have research payments or incentives.

is there a payment for participating in why?

There is no cost to join.

is there a cost for joining why?