Monday, 14 November 2011

Women's Health Study reveals resilient rural women are still short-changed in health

A special report, Rural, remote and regional differences in women's health from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health (ALSWH), based at the Universities of Newcastle and Queensland, highlights the resilience of rural women during drought. Rural women have poorer health in general and worse access to health services than those in cities - and the health care they get is inadequate.

The risk and prevalence of diabetes and hypertension are much higher for women (of all ages) with increasing distance from major cities. Rural women were more likely to die from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer and ischaemic heart disease than women in urban areas. The report shows that women in rural areas have higher levels of risk factors for heart disease. Obesity, which is strongly associated with increased risk of diabetes and hypertension, is much higher for country women of all ages.

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