Finding affordable health care in the United States is way harder than it should be. This is especially true for women, especially those who are mothers. Women make less money than men and women are also less likely to hold positions of employment that give them health insurance benefits Many women also take on the burden of paying for their children and their children’s healthcare and general needs. Many women put themselves last and their health does suffer. It’s a very sad reality that women have to choose between another month of their prescription medicine to treat a mood disorder or making sure their kids have enough snacks.
It is easy to suggest that these women perhaps apply for Medicaid or another form of assistance but qualifying for those programs isn’t that easy. Income levels must be extremely low and often times women and families will miss qualifying by just a couple of hundred dollars. So, while they may not be considered poor by the government, excessive cost of living, stagnant wages, and lack of affordable healthcare would beg to differ.
Women’s Health Needs Cost More Than Men’s
The US is famous for not having universal health care which truly does affect its citizens and women bear the brunt of it. The American Bar Association explains that women’s healthcare costs are typically higher than men’s overall. Women are more likely to have a chronic condition that requires ongoing medical care and are also more likely to take ongoing prescriptions such as birth control.
Women are also more likely to suffer from anxiety and depression which of course does require that the patient keep up on prescribed medicines and other treatment plans.
Women also incur frequent costs due to pregnancy, giving birth, and other issues related to their reproductive health. Even women who do not have children are required to see doctors more often in their fertile years to manage birth control or to treat common problems many women have with their uterus and ovaries.
Then after the reproductive years comes menopause which also requires more health care than men usually need as we all age. It all adds up quite quickly, and a mom without health insurance, who also doesn’t qualify for government assistance, may feel stuck.
Here’s Where To Find Quality Healthcare
If you’re located in the US, the Affordable Care Act on the federal government healthcare site may be one of your only options. There are a variety of plans and prices that are supposed to be in every price range. This is applied for on your county’s website, or you can go in person to speak to a county representative.
If you are pregnant, you will qualify for US Medicaid and prenatal care during your pregnancy no matter your income status. Most women who are currently uninsured do qualify for some sort of assistance or help.
The Kaiser Family Foundation states that 1 in 5 uninsured women qualifies for Medicaid but isn’t enrolled and 42% are eligible for subsidized marketplace insurance but also aren’t taking steps for coverage. They estimate that 3.8 million women are uninsured and don’t qualify for anything. Most of these women are minorities and/or immigrants. These women are the ones health providers are most concerned about.
There are local health clinics located in communities all over the United States. These clinics are staffed with qualified doctors and nurses and no one is ever turned away ever. Every person is treated and including women, and their children. For women in poverty, these health centers are much needed and appreciated.
Gender Bias In Health Care May Be Harming Women’s Health