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International Women’s Health Day: 4 Things You Need to Know

B
Bajaj Finserv Health
May 27th, 2022
6 mins read

Key Takeaways

  • International Women’s Health Day is observed every year on May 28
  • The observation of International Day for Women's Health began in 1987
  • Women are at a higher risk of post-COVID complications and other issues

May 28 is observed as International Women’s Health Da every year to raise awareness about women’s health and rights [1]. This day highlights the gaps to be filled by governments and health organizations to ensure women’s right to health. This year, as the pandemic’s impacts on women’s health, finances, and social security still remain unaddressed by the concerned authorities, the International Day of Action for Women’s Health 2022 aims to #ResistAndPersist with slogans like #WomensHealthMatters and #SRHRisEssential. This is also the International Women’s Health Day theme this year, especially with regard to the impact of coronavirus on women.

Read on to learn about the history and how International Women’s Health Day 2022 is poised to make a difference.

History of International Women’s Health Day 

The observation of International Women’s Health Day started in 1987, with official recognition from the Government of South Africa. It became an opportunity to make people aware of issues like sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) of women, gender-based violence against women, and more.

Additional Read: How Women Over 30 Can Address Their Health Proactively

History of International Women's Health Day

Basic Healthcare Rights of Women 

At a time when one in three women around the world are facing physical or sexual violence from an intimate partner, here are some basic rights highlighted by organizations like WHO, Guttmacher Institute, and more: 

  • Independence to choose one’s partner 
  • Access to modern contraceptive methods 
  • Right to safe abortion and post-abortion care 
  • Right to education on sex, sexuality, and sexual health 
  • Access to information about sexually transmitted infections and the preventive measures to keep them at bay

Countering the Pandemic’s Challenges 

While COVID-19 has overtaken health systems for more than two years, it has also widened the existing gender inequalities across the world. As a result, women’s health and well-being are at stake, especially in places where public healthcare systems are inadequate. As multiple studies show that women are at a higher risk of post-COVID health conditions, it is important to make policies accordingly. In India, where women play a major role in healthcare, representing a significant percentage of all healthcare workers and more than 80% of midwives and nurses, they are not yet that much part of the policymaking. In the national COVID-19 task force, only 13% of members are women. Here lies the concern.

Women’s Health issues

International Women’s Health Day 2022 Objectives 

On this International Women’s Health Day, SRHR activists around the world aim to appeal to governments and global institutions to apply certain measures to preserve women’s healthcare rights. These include recognizing SRHR as a crucial part of post-pandemic recovery by making safe abortion laws and providing post-abortion care services.

The observation of this day also aims to identify the diverse types of discrimination faced by girls and women that deprive them of social exposure. Apart from these, it aims to free women, girls, transgender men, and non-binary persons of menstruation-related stigma and social exclusion. It also intends to put a stop to sexual and gender-based violence. This is crucial from an Indian perspective, as about 30% of women in India experience sexual violence at least once in their lifetime. There are a few of the ten objectives with which International Women’s Health Day 2022 will be observed. You can get more information on this on the official website, May28.org.

Additional Read: Does Cold Weather Make Menstrual Cramps Worse

International Women's Health Day 2022 Objectives 

Improve your Health this International Women’s Health Day

To make your celebration of International Women’s Health Day worthwhile, you can consider the following: 

  • Start prioritizing workouts or exercise in the morning, afternoon, or evening based on your schedule  
  • Eat balanced meals, so you get needed nutrition based on your age and health needs  
  • Reduce your stress with mindfulness exercises, journaling, art, and other means  
  • Spend time with your loved ones to improve your mental well-being  
  • Go for preventive health check-ups to catch diseases early on  
  • Start managing symptoms of any disorder from an early stage instead of procrastinating visits to the doctor

Iit is also important to remember other factors that impact women’s health and well-being. For example, 74 crore women around the world are part of the informal economy, and the average hours spent by women in unpaid care and domestic work are three times more than that of men [2]. Another cause of concern is the global gender pay gap which shows that in similar roles, women still earn 37% less than men. Also, due to social isolation and limitation in movement, more and more women are becoming victims of sexual and gender-based violence and failing to reach out to support groups for help.

Considering all this, it is important to raise awareness on International Women’s Health Day among people across sex and gender and help women lead a better, safer, and healthier life. In case of any concern related to the physical or psychological health of women, you can book an online doctor consultation on Bajaj Finserv Health to get proper guidance. Apart from International Women’s Health Day, make sure you know about the importance of other such days like World Osteoporosis Day, World Red Cross Day, Mother’s Day, and more. With thorough knowledge about different aspects of healthcare, it becomes easy to lead a healthy and stress-free life!

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