Empowering Equality: Employers Taking Action to Bridge the Gender Health Gap on International Women’s Day

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International Women’s Day is celebrated in March every year, with this year’s theme being Inspire Inclusion. One of the focus areas for IWD is women’s health, which this year highlights the Gender Health Gap. Disparities in healthcare between genders can have significant implications for the workplace. For instance, if women face difficulty accessing healthcare or receive poorer treatment, it can lead to increased sick leave, longer recovery periods, and reduced productivity among female employees. Employers should recognise these disparities and understand how they can affect workplace performance.

Although employers cannot control societal healthcare gaps, they can take steps to address gender health inequalities within their organisations. Employers can create a supportive work environment by prioritising the health needs of female employees and breaking down taboos around women’s health issues. Training managers on women’s health complexities and unconscious bias can also help foster a more inclusive workplace culture.

Employers can also provide direct support, such as menopause, menstrual, fertility, and maternity assistance, to significantly improve the lives of female employees. By recognising and initiating conversations about women’s health, employers can play a crucial role in addressing gender inequalities in healthcare and promoting employee well-being.

Employers can support their female staff by investing in digital tools, organising internal campaigns, and providing resources for women’s health. By integrating women’s health into organisational policies and wellbeing strategies, employers can help narrow the gap, leading to a happier and healthier workforce. Initiating discussions, training line managers, and implementing supportive policies demonstrate an organisation’s commitment to addressing gender disparities in healthcare and ensuring the well-being of its employees.

Sharon Tomkins

Sharon is a New Zealand qualified Health Coach and Personal Trainer, as well as an ICF Certified Coach and Accredited Coaching Supervisor. Sharon was awarded the 'Health & Wellness Coach of the Year' 2022, by The Health Coaches Australia & New Zealand Association.
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