Why Join


“It’s not just about physical health, but how life experiences influence our well-being across our life-span. Our health changes over time and by domains including physical, emotional, social, sexual and intellectual health. WHY is unique in measuring changes in health over time and across this range of health domains.” 


—  Heather Bush, Ph.D., University of Kentucky, College of Public Health

For years, minorities have been underrepresented in science, and Wellness Health & You - WHY is helping to bridge this gap.

Through participants like you, we're able to give members the opportunity to volunteer for research and help influence the direction of research.


Our Story

A decade after our initial launch, we renamed KWHR to Wellness Health & You (WHY) to be more inclusive of all people across the United States. We created WHY to help meet the growing needs of both minority communities and researchers seeking to address health issues in these communities. 


WHY conducts a yearly survey of self-reported symptoms, health behaviors, prevention practices, and access to care. Following this baseline survey, we offer members additional surveys depending on their answers to the initial survey. We then partner with scientists and investigators to help ensure our member's (confidential and secure) data can be used to understand all aspects of health.

Inclusivity is a great way to improve the overall understanding of health. We value the differences among people because these differences can illuminate how health changes over time and varies among communities. We seek a diverse range of experiences and voices, which is why we need YOU to take action, and take part in Wellness Health & You.

How to Join

Joining WHY involves completing a short electronic survey




'WHY' Aims to Improve Everyone's Health Through Research

February 27, 2019

Dr. Greg from WUKY recently sat down with Doctors Ann Coker and Heather Bush about WHY.  Check out WUKY's website to listen to their interview and read an article by the University of Kentucky's news site, UKNow.

Women Are Dying Because Doctors Are Treating Us Like Men

April 25, 2017

For years, physicians have referred to women's healthcare as "bikini medicine" and assumed they can diagnose and treat both genders the same way. But it's costing women their lives.

Sex Matters: Drugs Can Affect Sexes Differently

February 09, 2014

More and more, scientists are realizing that the differences between the sexes are dangerously understudied

Co-Ed Lab Rats

May 19, 2014

Scientists discover that the tradition of testing medicine exclusively on male subjects can lead to negative side effects for women.

1 / 1

Please reload



Check back for events!

Meet The Team

Ann Coker, Ph.D., MPH

Inaugural Verizon Wireless Endowed Chair in the Center for Research on Violence Against Women at the University of Kentucky. She serves as Professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. She holds a Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the University of North Carolina.

Heather Bush, Ph.D.

Focuses on health outcomes research, with an emphasis on injury and violence, especially as it applies to women’s health and student populations. Heather leads Wellness, Health & You (WHY, formerly KWHR)

Kelsey Rutheford

Research coordinator for WHY who helps develop health content for the website and facebook page, answers participant emails, and coordinates meetings with interested researchers across campus. Kelsey believes in the WHY mission because it is a great way to get people involved and participating in research at any age!

Amanda Fallin-Bennett, Ph.D.

An active early-career tobacco control scientist with a focus on tobacco use and disparate populations. She has led projects related to tobacco use, policy and prevention for vulnerable populations: in tobacco growing states; and among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender adults, college students, and bar-going young adults. 

Lateshia Ousley

 A Community Health Worker who works to recruit women into the research database Wellness Health and You and for a cohort of sexual and gender minority women (WHY Queer and WHY POC.) Lateisha networks within the community by meeting with our community leaders and attending LGBTQ* community organized events and meetings.