The Government has published the first ever Women's Health Strategy for England, which aims to reduce disparities in healthcare between men and women.
The strategy includes key commitments around new research and data gathering, the expansion of women’s health-focused education and training for incoming doctors, improvements to fertility services, ensuring women have access to high quality health information, and updating guidance for female specific health conditions like endometriosis to ensure the latest evidence and advice is being used in treatment.
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‘Our health and care system only works if it works for everyone,’ said Health and Social Care Secretary Steve Barclay.
‘It is not right that 51% of our population are disadvantaged in accessing the care they need, simply because of their sex. The publication of this strategy is a landmark moment in addressing entrenched inequalities and improving the health and wellbeing of women across the country.’
Women live on average for longer than men but spend more of their life in poor health, often limiting their ability to work and participate in day to day activities. Closing the gender health gap and supporting women to live well will not only benefit the health and wellbeing of women, but the health of the economy.
Responses to the call for evidence highlighted a need for greater focus on women’s specific health conditions including fertility and pregnancy loss, and gynaecological conditions such as endometriosis, which affects 1 in 10 women
‘When we launched our call for evidence to inform the publication of this strategy, women across the country set us a clear mandate for change,’ said Minister for Women’s Health Maria Caulfield.
‘Tackling the gender health gap will not be easy - there are deep seated, systemic issues we must address to ensure women receive the same standards of care as men, universally and by default.’