Doctors will be FORCED to take women seriously under plans to close ‘gender health gap’


DOCTORS will be trained to take female patients more seriously under plans to boost women’s health. Doctors will have specific training to better listen to concerns of women.

NHS clinics giving sub-par IVF will be named and shamed and medics will be pushed harder to tackle sex-specific health issues including menopause, cancers and endometriosis.

Women spend a quarter of their life in bad health compared to a fifth for men and ministers plan to close the “gender health gap” with their new women’s health strategy.

Surveys show women feel “not listened to” and “ignored” by doctors – so medics will now have mandatory female-specific training and tests.

They will be schooled on health issues that affect women, including periods, menopause and gynaecological conditions.

Health Secretary Steve Barclay said: “Our health and care system only works if it works for everyone. 

“It is not right that 51 per cent of our population are disadvantaged in accessing the care they need, simply because of their sex.”

Ministers have also pledged to end the IVF postcode lottery and make the fertility treatment free for same-sex couples.

IVF treatment for couples struggling to conceive is run differently across the country meaning many couples’ dreams of having kids hang on where they live.

The Department of Health said it will come down hard on NHS boards that don’t offer good access to fertility treatments.

It also pledged to improve access to hormone replacement therapy for menopause, following shortages highlighted by our Menopause Matters campaign.

Officials will set up 25 new breast cancer screening trucks and women’s health hubs and campaign to boost awareness of reproductive health.

Health minister Maria Caulfield said: “Tackling the gender health gap will not be easy.

“There are deep-seated issues we must address to ensure women receive the same standards of care as men. This strategy is the start of that journey.”

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