Recession Hurts Women’s Health

Economic slump is causing women to skip out on healthcare.

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By Bonnie Erbe, Thomas Jefferson Street blog.

With the stock market at record lows and unemployment soaring ever skyward, the economy is also having a negative impact on women's health. This, according to a new study by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Forty percent of women surveyed say their health worsened in the past year, with many disregarding follow-up doctor visits and all manner of healthcare in order to save money. Since women are usually in charge of healthcare for the whole household, this neglect could impact the entire family.

Nearly half of women (45%) have failed to seek medical care in the past year because the cost was too high. This includes skipping doctor's visits, recommended medical procedures and medication for themselves or their families.

Hispanic women were most likely to have skipped health care in the past year (58%) versus white (43%) or African American (42%) women.

In addition, more than 40% of women report their health has declined over the past five years and the most common reasons given for this were stress and weight gain.

No wonder women are so stressed. We read about Wall Street titans losing jobs by the tens of thousands. But we hear very little about minimum wage workers, some two thirds of whom are women:

60.9 percent of workers earning between $5.15 and $7.00 per hour are women.