Raising Awareness on Health Disparities for Young Women in 2023
Goodside Health joins the global community in calling for the continued advancement of gender equity as we celebrate International Women’s Day.
Observed annually on March 8 during Women’s History Month in the United States, this year’s theme of #EmbraceEquity sets the backdrop for a celebration of the achievements, contributions, and growth of women across the world and here at home.
In 1878, the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution made it illegal to deny any citizen the right to vote based on sex. Still, it took more than 40 years for that constitutional right to be certified.
It wasn’t until 1920 that the votes of women would count in elections, and it would take additional civil rights legislation in the 1960s to ensure that all women and citizens wouldn’t be discriminated against at the polls.
That challenging pathway of a woman’s right to vote serves as an important anecdote in the broader discussion of gender equity. Even today, nearly 145 years after that landmark legislation, significant work remains despite important yet often incremental gains in fundamentals like the gender pay gap1 and access to equitable healthcare.
Of the more than 1.1 million eligible students Goodside Health is proud to serve, almost exactly 50% are girls under the age of 18. As we recognize the progress we’ve made in recent times, we shine a light on some important statistics impacting girls and young women in today’s healthcare landscape:
- In a recent national survey, 1-in-5 menstruating teens struggled to afford period products while nearly 80% either missed class or knew of a student that missed class time because they didn’t have access to period products.2
- A recent study formally acknowledges the disproportionate, negative impact that social media can have on the body size and dieting behavior of adolescent females.3
- The CDC’s Youth Risk Behavior Summary (YRBS) saw a “dramatic” increase in the percentage of girls who “felt sad or hopeless” from 2011 to 2021. More than 57% of girls felt sad or hopeless in 2021, up from 36% in 2011. In addition, roughly 30% of girls had considered attempting suicide, a nearly 60% increase from 2011.4
- Adolescent girls who are labeled as overweight or obese by their families demonstrated a stronger association with disordered, unhealthy eating, than girls who were not weight-labeled.5
- Girls ages 12-and-over are more likely to experience substance abuse than teen boys, and girls are particularly vulnerable to alcohol dependence and select other substances of abuse.6
Goodside Health is committed to serving patients by providing appropriate, quality care that considers the gender, cultural and ethnic backgrounds, lived experiences, and values of every individual. We understand that:
Culturally Competent care starts by acknowledging that every racial and ethnic group as well as every person is inherently unique.
The way that someone receives, processes, and reacts in a healthcare setting is both rooted in their culture and their own lived experience.
‘What is important to you?’ and ‘How can we be helpful?’ are always appropriate questions for the patient and family.
Patients and partners trust Goodside Health to care for their families because of our expertise as well as our capacity to adjust recommendations to best meet the patient’s and family’s life circumstances.
Goodside Health is proud to serve a growing number of increasingly diverse communities through our school-based and virtual care services as well as across our Urgent Care for Kids clinics.
Stay tuned to our Good News page as we celebrate important cultural and diversity observances throughout 2023.
About Goodside Health
Goodside Health is advancing the delivery of pediatric care by partnering with communities to provide access to physical health, mental health, and telehealth services at school, at home, and in the clinic. Relentless advocates for expanding access to care and promoting health equity, Goodside Health leverages a Whole-Child Approach to care and lives our mission of closing gaps in children’s healthcare through innovation and execution. To learn more about Goodside Health, please visit www.goodsidehealth.com.
The Enduring Grip of the Gender Pay Gap. 2023. Pew Research Center.
State of the Period. The widespread impact of period poverty on US students. 2019. Commissioned by Thinx & PERIOD.
Craike, Young, Symons, Pain, Harvey, Eime, and Payne. Trends in body image of adolescent females in metropolitan and non-metropolitan regions: a longitudinal study. November 8, 2016. BMC Public Health.
U.S. Teen Girls Experiencing Increased Sadness and Violence. 2023. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Hunger and Tomiyama. Weight Labeling and Disordered Eating Among Adolescent Girls: Longitudinal Evidence From the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Growth and Health Study. April 25, 2018. J Adolesc Health.
Fact Sheet. 2022. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.