MUST READ: WHY MEN DIE EARLIER THAN WOMEN
According to World Health Organisation (WHO) men die earlier than women due to many factors relating to men’s health ranging from uneven access to health services, hard labor and others.
However, according to “2019 World Health Statistics” article on the WHO website, the trend is found in high-income and low-income countries as men pay less attention to seeking for health care services compare to women. World Health Statistics report was disaggregated by sex for the first time, stated that women outlived men everywhere in the world particularly in wealthy countries.
“The report was published to coincide with World Health Day commemorated on April 7 yearly. This year, 2019, the celebration focuses on primary health care as the foundation of UHC; the new WHO statistics pointed the need to improve access to PHC globally and to increase uptake.
“One of WHO’s triple billion goals is for one billion more people to have UHC by 2023.
“This implies improving access to services at community level especially and ensuring that those services are accessible, affordable, and effective for everyone in the community regardless of their gender.” Below are the findings from WHS.
Findings from World Health Statistics (WHS) Report
The article also pointed that where men and women faced similar or the same disease, men often seek health care less than women. This might be due to that fact that most men are always busy with one thing or the other. And most men as well think that weakness of the body or being stressed up is a normal thing. This notion make them to undermined their health status or go for a regular check up.
However, it is emphasised that only by intensifying and delibrate efforts to attain Universal Health Coverage (UHC) can any country close this health gap and improve living, health and wellbeing of everyone in the society.
“In countries with generalized HIV epidemics, for instance, men are less likely than women to admit or take HIV screening or test, less likely to access antiretroviral therapy and have higher tendency or more likely to die of AIDS-related illnesses than women who admit to certain therapeutical measures.
“It can also be seen that male Tuberculosis (TB) patients appear to be less likely to seek medical care than female Tuberculosis (TB) patients.
The report also highlights the difference in causes of death between men and women. Women easily access health services thereby decreasing maternal mortality and lengthening women’s life expectancy.
“Men’s deaths have been attributed to biological, some influenced by environmental and societal associated factors while some are impacted by readiness to and uptake of health services,” the report said.
“WHS report showed that of the 40 prevalent causes of death in the world, 33 causes contribute more to reduced expectancy of life rate in men than in women.
The report stated that in 2016, the probability of a 30-year-old dying from a non comunicable disease before the age of 70 years was 44 per cent higher in men than women.
Another evidence from the report shows that the rate of global suicide mortality was 75 per cent higher in men than in women in the year 2016.
The report indicated that death rates arising from road accident or injury were more than twice high in men than in women within the age of 15 and it could also be deduced that mortality rates due to homicide were also 4 times higher in men than women.
The report quoted Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, the WHO Director-General, who says that “breaking down data according to ages, sex and income is vital to understanding who is left behind and why”. He also said that “behind every number in the World Health Statistics was a person, a family, a community or a nation”.
He advocated that the goal of the organisation would be to use the data gotten from analysis and make evidence-based policy decisions that would instigate everyone closer to a healthier, fairer and safer world.
“The gap between men’s and women’s life expectancy is narrowest in the case where women lack access to health services.
“In countries with low-income, where health services are not easily accessed, 1 in 41 women die from a maternal related problem, when compared with 1 in 3,300 in countries with high-income.
“Also, in more than 90% of low-income countries, we have fewer than 4 nursing and midwifery personnel per 1000 population of people.”
Also, Dr Samira Asma, the WHO Assistant Director General for Data, Analytics and Delivery, made it know that these statistics underscored the need to prioritise PHC urgently to effectively manage non-communicable diseases and to curb risk factors.
Asma further explained that for instance, attaining or controlling something as simple as blood pressure was just not happening based on the scale needed and tobacco utilization was still a leading cause of premature death.
The director general said that between 2000 and 2016, global life-expectancy at birth has increased by 5.5 years which was from 66.5 to 72.0 years. She added that irrespective of the challenges, life expectancy has improved since 2000.
This means that healthy life expectancy at birth which is know as the number of years an individual is expected to live in full health has increased from 58.5 years in 2000 to 63.3 years in 2016.
“However, life expectancy remains unavoidably affected by income; for instance in low-income countries, life expectancy is 18.1 years lower than in high-income countries when compared. It could also read that a child in every 14 born in a low-income country will die before their fifth birthday,” Asma said.
In conclusion, Asma pointed that this new analysis has provided deep insight into the health and needs of people around the world.