International Women’s Day 2010

9 03 2010

Women advocating for women's health around the world at the 2009 conference for International Women's Day

Since gender is one of the contributors to health disparities, the WHO (World Health Organization) is doing all that they can to promote healthy lifestyles for women by providing opportunities for them to receive health care and health education. The WHO has created an international women’s day, which falls on March 8th every year.  The theme for International Women’s Day this year is “Equal rights, equal opportunities: progress for all” which re-emphasizes that equal rights and opportunities lead to improved health outcomes for women and girls.

Gender norms and values give rise to gender inequalities. The fact that, throughout the world, women on average have lower cash incomes than men is an example of a gender inequality.  Both gender differences and gender inequalities can give rise to inequities between men and women in health status and access to health care. For example, a woman cannot receive needed health care because norms in her community prevent her from travelling alone to a clinic. A married woman contracts HIV because societal standards encourage her husband’s promiscuity while simultaneously preventing her from insisting on condom use.

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