The gender gap in health, a hole of almost 9,000 million euros a year to Spain

women invisible that sustain life: why do you always take care of them? SPECIAL 25-N: adolescent Victims of gender-based violence: "You get used to living

The gender gap in health, a hole of almost 9,000 million euros a year to Spain

women invisible that sustain life: why do you always take care of them?

SPECIAL 25-N: adolescent Victims of gender-based violence: "You get used to living well, to have fear always"

in The end, what will hurt us is the pocketbook. We can theorize about the social injustices, on why equality is an utopia to aim for, we can put ourselves activists, holocaust deniers, stay neutral... But in the end, what will hurt us is the pocketbook. And if we talk about pocket and the gender gap, the first thing that comes to mind is the wage gap, that makes men charge average of 23.2% more per month than women in Spain, according to the latest global report of the International Labour Organization (ILO). However, there are more gaps than that salary. And yes, also affect the pocket; and the women, yes, but also of men.

"women live longer but with worse health than men." To kick off the first study on the gender gap in health in Spain, the cluster Closing the Gap, in collaboration with the consulting company Afi, has to start from this premise, simple but fundamental. Women are born with a life expectancy of 5.5 years higher than that of men. At 65, that difference still yields a positive balance for them, and even lower: to live 3.9 years longer but in worse health conditions (up to eight points less in the perception of own state of health, according to the INE) and in a situation of greater dependence.

What appears to be the natural development and succession of life conceals, however, certain social conditions. And they are modifiable. The study of Closing the Gap focuses the shot on the factors on which the difference between men and women is remarkable, and the result of a comprehensive study sheds a conclusion that, at least, gives food for thought: the gender gap in health costs to Spain, each year, 8.945 million euros, a 0.8% of GDP, and the equivalent to 70% of pharmaceutical costs. This means that if women enjoy better health system would save almost 9,000 million euros. There is nothing. Opportunity cost, in economic terms, gender gap, in social terms.

The gap in life-style: do not get sick like

women are turning more assiduously to primary care. The men visited the hospital. The difference is not huge, but the causes are not the same. They are more common disorders related to the systems heart and respiratory systems, and cancer, in addition to psychological problems associated with the consumption of drugs and alcohol, while they fail most of the bones and joints, and, psychologically, are more likely to depression and eating disorders.

The end of life is not the same for everyone: men die mainly of cancer, as women die mostly by cardiovascular accidents, to those who come in to a greater extent in a situation of senile dementia or Alzheimer's. However, the thing might start to change, because if they continue to smoke and drink more, the difference has been lessened to forced marches in the last few years.

And about you: what have the disease with the machismo? Yes, in the medical treatments there is a gender bias unconscious that balances the scales in favor of the men. Although the medical profession has been feminizando, the sector has historically been a male camp. And clinical trials, to determine the symptoms that lead to diagnosis, have been conducted mainly on male subjects. The conclusion graph is the following: men get sicker from the heart, but women die more by heart attack. And is that the symptoms are not the same. Does it sound like that pain in the chest and in the left arm? Without wanting to, is describing a possible heart attack in a man, but not in a woman, you will feel pain in the womb.

The health of others costs us all money

If the style of life influences health and spent the greater part of the day working, it seems that the job is a good barometer to measure the gender gap. According to the report Closing the Gap, in Spain, there are 4.3 million people who claim to be in charge of older persons and the chronically ill, the non-professional. 59% are women, and the percentage grows to 64% in case of dependants. They care more and devote themselves to the care of the 62% of the total number of declared hours: 1,800 million euros a year.

If that alternative care is regulating, would be equivalent to more than 977.000 jobs annual full-time: that they care more costs us all 7,812 million euros per year. But also, taking care is a task that wears out, so that increases of 3.4 points in the probability of suffering depression, and in 2.7 the probability of suffering anxiety. 13.4% of the women declared having suffered depression in the past 12 months compared to 7.3% of men, and this translates into an incidence of 345 million euros per year in concept of temporary disability, 0.02% of GDP.

The health affects employment regulated, and professional occupations predominantly performed by women concentrated occupational diseases, which require greater recovery time. Thus, the average duration of sickness professional is 11 days longer for them. All in a context in which the women are 92% of the sabbaticals due to care of children, 83% for care of dependent family members. Are talents female that is put in pause.

The children remain of them

Although having children under the age of 12 years does not have a negative effect on the employment rate of men between 25 and 49 years, yes, you are, in women: the gap widens to 23 points. It may be one of the reasons why we have children six years later, in 1975, and in addition we have a little more than half.

The report Closing the Gap has been simulated a variation of the birth rate similar to the average of the countries of our environment since 1984, and has projected the results to 2016: Spain could have had 1.2 million more inhabitants, 900,000 of which would be in 2016 at a working age. In conclusion: the reduced birth rate has made us renounce 31.003 million euros, 2.8% of the GDP and almost 50% of public spending annually on health care. In a country in which the word pension cup the conversation in the Congress and on the street, we are missing 2.872 million in contributions, not to promote policies that encourage motherhood.

"In Closing the Gap we have proposed to analyze gaps that we don't talk much, because habitualmente is speaking of wages but we stayed in there," explains Marieta Jimenez, president of the cluster, and the executive of the pharmaceutical company Merck Spain. It seems easy to deduce why the first study focuses on the gap in health, but the future of this platform, built by Mapfre, Vodafone, BMW, Melia Hotels, L'oreal, Repsol, Mahou and solán de Cabras, promises to put the finger in other gaps: pensions, digital domain, conciliation and co-responsibility, leisure, tourism, consumption and mobility.

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Date Of Update: 10 December 2018, 20:03

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