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  • Writer's pictureHannah Hunt

International Women's Day: A healthcare perspective.

"Why do we need International Women’s Day?” 

International Women’s Day is an opportunity to celebrate the accomplishments of women and those who paved the way for gender equality, acknowledge the work that remains to be done, and connect with the important women in our lives and be thankful for them. It was first internationally recognised by the United Nations in 1975 as a call to action to close the gender gap in terms of health, education, economics, and politics. While incredible efforts have been made to decrease these inequalities, there remains a wide range of sectors in which women still face institutionalised discrimination. 

In the healthcare setting, inequality manifests as a relative lack of knowledge of women’s health issues, symptoms not being taken seriously, and a lack of female leadership in the healthcare profession. These cause delays in treatment with serious long-term consequences. It was less than 150 years ago that the first female doctor was allowed to practice in the UK, and less than 30 years ago that women were included in clinical trials in the US, which has led to significant knowledge gaps for women’s health. It is vital for people of all genders to recognise the existence of these issues so that they can be addressed. Lack of awareness and education on these issues remain a significant hurdle in the progression of gender equality. 

Today, we remember the actions of women like Dr. Sophia Jex-Blake, who campaigned to enable women to access university education. She was initially refused admission to study medicine, until she rallied together a group of women and filed a joint application. After proving their academic abilities, they were routinely physically and verbally attacked and stalked by their fellow male students. The medical faculty decided she would not be allowed to graduate, despite having passed her exams. Sophia initiated a campaign for reform and founded the London School of Medicine for Women. Thanks to her efforts, in 1877 women were accepted onto degree programmes for the first time, and she was finally awarded her medical degree.

As specialists in women’s health, our imperative is to provide high-quality care for women and pregnant people of all genders, and we are very proud to have a team of intelligent and driven women forming the backbone of our company. By working with our partners to provide safe and highly effective products, we hope to act as a leading example for the industry in improving the health of women and newborns.   

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