As modern healthcare workers, today’s nurses have to wear many hats. However, the top priority remains the same — supporting the health and safety of their patients. There’s no question that healthcare technology has come a long way in recent years, advancing the industry and helping millions of people. However, there is still a lack of understanding when it comes to women’s health.
Nurses can help bridge that gap and improve women’s healthcare nationwide.
Nurses can provide healthcare services to women in need and help spread awareness of critical issues, educate others, and help women make more informed decisions about their bodies. It’s a fantastic way to empower today’s women and ensure they get the healthcare they deserve without worrying about any disparities in medical treatment due to gender.
Let’s look closely at how nurses can improve women’s healthcare and why it’s so important.
Offering More Services
Telehealth isn’t necessarily anything new. During and post-pandemic, though, telehealth saw a rapid rise in popularity. Now, more practitioners and patients alike are utilizing it, thanks to benefits like:
- Decreased infection exposure
- Improved patient scheduling
- Improved collaboration
- Better capacity management
It’s also an excellent option for patients who might live in underserved areas or those without the means to get to a medical office. So not only is telehealth beneficial for patients, but it also allows nurses to offer their services and expertise to those who aren’t comfortable visiting a doctor in person. That can be especially helpful for women who have had negative medical experiences or even those who struggle with medical anxiety.
Sometimes, even talking to someone via telehealth can help eliminate that medical fear and make patients comfortable enough to come in. That can be highly beneficial if they have a condition or symptoms that require an in-person visit. In addition, you never know what a caring attitude and kind tone via video call can do to change someone’s opinion about getting medical treatment.
Nurses should be at the frontlines when fighting for health equity for women and other marginalized groups. As a nurse, your goal should be to improve global health, but you should be focused on the key medical issues affecting women in your backyard. Because so many women face societal inequities, they’re more likely to develop health issues. Some of the most prominent health issues impacting women across the world include:
- Heart disease
- Breast cancer
Maternal health issues and sexual health problems are also largely ignored when it comes to the well-being of women.
Nurses can raise awareness on a local, national, and global scale by encouraging women to familiarize themselves with specific symptoms and helping them understand what’s considered normal. They can recommend necessary screenings, offer support, and promote healthy living.
Even if you think you need more time to spread awareness to a larger audience, you can do plenty to help each female patient you work with, starting with educating them.
Far too many women don’t make positive decisions about their health or bodies because they’ve either been misinformed or haven’t been given enough information about how to care for themselves or look out for signs of illness.
One of women’s most significant problems regarding health education is dealing with myths. It can be challenging to separate the truth from what they might have heard from a friend, family member, or even something online.
For example, there are many myths surrounding vaginas and how they work. Just because a woman is born with one doesn’t automatically mean she knows everything about it. Unfortunately, this lack of education can increase the risk of sexually transmitted diseases, yeast infections, and more.
Dispelling some of those women’s health myths and misinformation can help empower women regarding their bodies. Teaching women how to care for themselves and their specific body parts properly will go a long way in preventing diseases and improving their quality of life.
Nurses should be well-equipped to educate their female patients. Nurses often serve as the first point of contact in a doctor’s office or hospital. If you have the opportunity to do a patient interview, show compassion as you go through their medical history and learn about their health concerns. Part of education includes speaking with confidence and experience but not with judgment. The last thing a woman wants is to feel ashamed or embarrassed about her condition or lack of knowledge.
Many things need to change in the medical industry to improve women’s healthcare. However, don’t let that overwhelm you or lead you to believe that you can’t do your part and make a difference. Nurses can change the face of women’s healthcare for a brighter, healthier tomorrow.