To mark IWD 2023, our employees and partners share their perspectives on our new women’s health strategy and our work to embrace gender equity in health and social care.
International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality.
Today, in celebration of IWD, we are proud to launch of our first-ever women’s health strategy, which sets out our vision for how we will contribute to addressing the inequities women face in health and care today.
Play the video to hear about our new women’s health strategy from Dr MaryAnn Ferreux, our medical director.
Our mission in the space of women’s health is: ‘To reduce health inequalities for women, by ensuring that all women have access to the best quality health and care.’ Our strategy outlines five focus areas where we believe we can make a real difference through our work. You can read more here.
Why is equity needed in healthcare?
This year’s IWD theme is embracing equity. Equity-based solutions to social issues account for the diverse lived experiences of individuals and communities, adapting services and policies according to these differences. Equity is a long-term and sustainable solution and is a process for addressing imbalanced social systems.
In health and social care, there is an urgent need to address the gender imbalance. Women are not receiving the same level of care, investigation or treatment for common and important diseases when compared to men. The consequence of this inequality is that women have demonstrable worse clinical outcomes in many significant disease areas than men.
Women’s health needs are frequently considered only in terms of reproductive health, which fails to capture the diverse needs of women, girls, and older women. More work must be done to understand sex differences in pathophysiology, treatment response and effectiveness, as well as access to healthcare focused on reducing gender inequities.
The role of FemTech in gender equity
The UN’s theme this year focuses on innovation and technology for gender equality. As an organisation focused on innovation, this theme aligns with much of the work we are doing to improve health outcomes for women. As a team, we are passionate about finding solutions and new heath technologies that can support women and girls to thrive, whatever their life stage.
We connect citizens, NHS and academic organisations, local authorities, the third sector and industry to facilitate change across whole health and social care economies. We work closely with innovators to accelerate the development and uptake of innovation into the NHS.
As our CEO, Des Holden explains: “We will make the biggest impact by thinking about groups of people who do well from traditional health and care offerings, and groups who don’t, and thinking about how the offering needs to change, or be made differently.” We believe FemTech and women’s health innovations are key to reducing the gender health gap.
We have been delighted to support The Real Birth Company and Adora Digital Health with their innovations lately. Hear from the founders of these companies about their innovations and how they are supporting gender equity through their work.