Mind the gender health gap

The Editors
Photo credit: Jobe Lawrenson

From Cosmopolitan

Women all around the UK are struggling to get the healthcare they need. As a result of the gender health gap, we are being misdiagnosed, fobbed off and forgotten at an alarming rate, with disastrous consequences.

Photo credit: Jobe Lawrenson

In the same way that gender discrimination affects our offices, pay packets and relationships, it may also be affecting our health. Research shows that women are more likely than men to die in situations where CPR is needed. We’re more likely to wait longer for certain cancer diagnoses. Over the last 10 years it is estimated that more than 8,000 women in the UK have died as a result of heart disease that was misdiagnosed or mistreated as a result of gender bias. Women are twice as likely to suffer delays in brain tumour diagnosis than men. And 74% of Cosmopolitan readers say that they have been made to feel they were overreacting by a medical professional.

Unconscious bias exists within us all, and if we don’t commit to calling ourselves up on it, it runs riot - a problem that in healthcare results in unnecessary and preventable deaths.

Photo credit: Hearst Owned

In this upcoming series, Cosmopolitan will investigate the effects of the gender health gap on medicine in the UK. We will examine how unconscious bias also affects society’s most vulnerable on a daily basis, from pregnant women of colour to the transgender community. And then we will explore what changes need to be made, what progress needs to be taken, to make healthcare fairer for all.

Watch this space...

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