Health & Fitness

Is Gender Inequality affecting the health of women and the healthcare system?

Patriarchy, a well-known term, which denies equality in society among men and women; by giving privilege to Men in our society. It is highly criticized in this era, as the third wave of Feminism is at its peak. However, the fact that cannot be denied that Gender inequality is not a myth, it is reality, and it does exist to the point that women are being jeopardized by not emancipating their basic rights. These rights include the most basic rights like jobs, salaries etc. even living. But one of the most important rights which is pertinent to mention here is their health, as they are the ones who have to keep a baby inside their womb for nine months, and then feeding them for years. This is a serious issue that needs to be enlightened by the nations and organizations that are working for the rights of women and healthcare equity. Not just this, but the women who are working in the healthcare system, are paid less as compared to the male faculty. In fact, it is evident that they are paid low overall. But the fact that a system which needs proper management of human beings, like the system if health care, shall imply with the rules and regulation of equally paying their employee. There both issues are pertinent to discuss in detail.

When it comes to health care of women, as an individual in our society, it is reported that women are dealt with fewer precautions and are given less attention as compared to the male patient, which is devastating to even think about. In our society, where the women are the one who makes and breaks homes, and is a threshold for the society to empower, instead of empowering them, the society is making their lives miserable. 

Gender differences in health and in how well health systems and health care services meet the needs of women and men are well known: in Europe, there are variations in terms of life expectancy, the risk of mortality and morbidity, health behaviors and in the use of health care services. There is also increasing research evidence demonstrating the importance of a number of different social determinants of health, and these interact with gender inequalities in ways that can magnify the impact on health. Additionally, there has also been an increasing recognition that health policy may exacerbate gender inequalities when it fails to address the needs of either men or women, and that health systems must address gender equity. This forms part of good stewardship, as well as meeting the needs of the populations served. Gender equity objectives have also been identified in position statements from WHO, the United Nations and the European Union (EU). 

For the purposes of this policy brief, the ‘policy problem’ is the way in which health systems might address gender equity in order to reduce the health gap between men and women and to improve efficiency. This document identifies some of the main approaches used to address gender equity in health systems, elaborating on three examples in order to suggest how these methods might be developed in the context of health policies across Europe. The underlying causes of the gender gap in health which might be addressed by health systems and health care services include differences between women and men in their use of preventive health care, their health behaviors and in their access to health care and treatment – all of which affect health outcomes for women and men. It is difficult to calculate the exact proportion of the gender gap that can be attributed to gender inequality in the planning and delivery of health services.

 However, the consequences of not addressing gender are likely to include persistent excess mortality among men, underuse, and inefficient use, of health resources, poor user satisfaction and, for some countries, perhaps, a widening gender gap in health.

This need of proper health care is mentioned by the WHO, as a high risk and red alert situation. 

If we take a look on the other problem, it will eventually lead us towards a health issue of women. Now, as mentioned earlier, women in our patriarch society, do not get basic rights, like getting right which is the entire point of Feminism which states “Feminism is a range of Social movements, political movements and ideology, that aim to define, establish, and achieve the political, economic, personal, and social equality of sexes. Feminism incorporates the position that societies prioritize the male point of view, and that women are treated unfairly within those societies. Efforts to change that include fighting gender stereotypes and seeking to establish educational and professional opportunities for women that are equal to those for men”. 

But as they get less privilege, they suffer much more. The depression, anxiety because of lack of resources for them, makes them affect very badly, as they struggle to fulfill their daily needs. So, eventually it leads them towards hospitals and doctors etc. Which is already a problem, as mentioned earlier. This is exactly why the deaths in this world by the causes of lack of attention given to them is high. Meanwhile the violence on the women increases, which includes domestic violence. The women who face domestic violence needs the support of the states and nations, but the fact that current legislations do not support them apparently, as the failure rate is high. If not this, then at least a better health care support program shall be implemented. 

Domestic violence however is not allowed and strictly prohibited in all the regard, be it religion or legislation. The jurisprudence for treating women better shall be the highest priority. As, the health care system is bias, altogether. 

Moreover, it is necessary to mention the fact that after the corona pandemic has hit, the cases of domestic violence have increased. The lockdown has forced males to spend time at home, and because they cannot go outside and spend some time outside while working and other necessary activities banned, they take their anger out by hitting their partner or torturing them. 

According to a report, 243 million women face domestic violence. This shows the lack of legislation and the fact that the entire world has failed to give the basic rights to women, which includes the health care facility too. 

87000 women were killed in 2017, by domestic violence, this number shows that the health care system is a failure for women, because most of the women were not killed inside home, but were dead because of lack of attention given to them in the hospital. This report is conducted in U.S, which concludes that women are paid less in the hospitals as compared to male. However, the job of a women is way harder than of a male, as they serve in varies other duties, apart from just operational. Now imagine the level of mismanagement and gender inequality in the society that a woman, who is faced with severe violence, paid less salary, faces many challenges has to face this biasness in the health care system, where her services are very much needed. 

“Female PCPs earn 25% less than men; specialists earn 33% less”. This report is conducted in U.S, which concludes that women are paid less in the hospitals as compared to male. However, the job of a women is way harder than of a male, as they serve in varies other duties, apart from just operational. Now imagine the level of mismanagement and gender inequality in the society that a woman, who is faced with severe violence, paid less salary, faces many challenges has to face this biasness in the health care system, where her services are very much needed. 

However, there is another school of thought which says that it is evident that male should be getting higher salary without any second thought. The reasons are various, that male is the one who as to earn for the family, because it has been going on since ages, from the creation of mankind, females are better at doing and managing their homes, while males are the ones who should go out and perform duties in order to earn more and more to help his needs to be fulfilled. 

What ever the school of thought must be, it cannot be neglected that the fact gender equality has to be implemented for the betterment of the society, and female, if working in the same scale at healthcare or any other sector must be paid the same amount of salary a man is paid, otherwise this gap of gender inequality will be widen, and it will affect the overall economy and society, as the protests for good feminism laws are taking place all over the world. A society with no justice and jurisprudence of equity among all its people, can never be able to live with peace and prosperity, which is the main motive of any government for its people and the sovereignty of its country. 

About the author

sana

sana

Khurram Jamil - Digital Marketer By Profession & Blogger By Passion. Food Lover By Choice

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