Women’s Health In India Deserves Urgent Attention

Women have historically been marginalised when it comes to healthcare access, resources, and research. This has resulted in a significant disparity between women's health outcomes and those of men

STP Reporter
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Women’s Health In India Deserves Urgent Attention
Women's health is a critical issue that deserves global attention. Unfortunately, women have historically been marginalised when it comes to healthcare access, resources, and research. This has resulted in a significant disparity between women's health outcomes and those of men.

In India for example, one statistic shows that 60 per cent of women do not opt for work due to health issues like malnutrition, lack of maternal health, breast cancer, domestic violence and many more.


Weak and fatigued

The multi-tasking nature of women's work at home and outside and a cultural setting has pushed nutrition back for women by decades.

The prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency ranged from 40% to 99%, with most of the studies reporting a prevalence of 80%–90%. It was prevalent in all age groups and high-risk groups alike. This data as per research by Sanjeev Kumar Gupta and P Aparna reminds us of the deep consequences deficiency has like autoimmune diseases, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and tuberculosis among others.

Additionally, a lot of other factors play a role. We need to focus on the individual’s overall health, psychological and physical health status is often dramatically impacted by the presence of malnutrition.


India has one of the highest rates of malnourished women among developing countries. A 2012 study by Tarozzi found the nutritional intake of early adolescents to be approximately equal. However, it is seen that the rate of malnutrition increases for women as they enter adulthood.

Maternal malnutrition has been associated with an increased risk of maternal mortality and also childbirth defects. Addressing the issues of malnutrition would have beneficial outcomes for women and children.

What does data tell about Women’s Health In India?

‘The Indian Women’s Health Report 2021’ a study by Emcure Pharmaceuticals that surveyed working women of 25 to 55 years in white-collar jobs across 7 cities (Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai and Pune) reveals prevalent societal stigma prevents most women from talking about their health-related issues.

86% of the working women have observed their colleagues/relatives/friends drop out of the workforce, 59% of whom cited health issues as the main reason.

80% of the working women felt that their male colleagues lacked sensitivity when it came to women health-related concerns


67% of working women say that talking about health issues is still considered to be a taboo in the society

Here are some reasons why women's health deserves global attention:

Women face unique health challenges

Women's health issues are often unique and require specialised care. For example, reproductive health issues such as pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause can be complex and require specialised care. Additionally, women are more susceptible to certain diseases such as breast cancer, cervical cancer, and osteoporosis, which require early detection and treatment.

Women are underrepresented in clinical research

Historically, women have been underrepresented in clinical research. This has resulted in a lack of understanding of women's health issues and the development of gender-specific treatments. For example, many drugs have been developed with male subjects, and their effectiveness and safety for women are often unknown.


Women face barriers to healthcare access

Women face numerous barriers to accessing health care, including cultural and social barriers, financial barriers, and geographic barriers. This lack of access can result in delayed diagnosis and treatment, as well as increased morbidity and mortality rates.

Women's health affects society as a whole

Women's health is not just an issue for women; it affects society as a whole. Women play a vital role in families and communities, and their health impacts the well-being of those around them. Improving women's health can result in healthier families, communities, and societies.

Gender inequality impacts women's health

Gender inequality is a major factor that impacts women's health. Women face discrimination and violence, which can lead to physical and mental health problems. Gender-based violence is a pervasive issue that affects women around the world, and addressing it is critical to improving women's health.

In conclusion, women's health is a critical issue that deserves global attention. Women face unique health challenges, are underrepresented in clinical research, face barriers to healthcare access, their health impacts society as a whole, and gender inequality impacts their health. Addressing these issues is critical to improving women's health outcomes and achieving gender equity in health care access, research, and outcomes. It's time to give women's health the attention it deserves.

Image from Getty

Suggested Reading: Revolutionising Healthcare Access For Indian Women With Cutting-Edge Technology 


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