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Health Care & The Busy Professional. Presented by Dr. Safa El Baz. I n the 21 st century, millions of us wake to the gush of adrenaline that follows the annoying bleat of our clock-radios…. F rom that moment far into the night, we are racing to meet our commitments at work and at home….

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Health Care & The Busy Professional

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Health Care

&

The Busy

Professional

Presented by

Dr. Safa El Baz


In the 21st century, millions of us wake to the gush of adrenaline that follows the annoying bleat of our clock-radios…


From that moment far into the night, we are racing to meet our commitments at work and at home…


Experts say, the burden and health hazards of those commitments tend to fall twice as heavily on the shoulders of women as they do on men.


The 2 important questions that should be asked now are….

1. What are those hazards?

2. What to do about limiting their effect?


Common Health Problems

  • Stress-related illness.

  • Reproductive disorders.

  • Musculoskeletal disorders.

  • Cardiac & respiratory diseases.

  • Neurological disorders.

  • Infectious diseases.

  • Cancer.


Reference will be made here to

  • Stress and

  • Reproductive health disorders


Stress

Has emerged as an important hazard in the contemporary workplace.

It has been associated with a range of emotional & physical ailments, including coronary artery disease and myocardial infarction.


Why are women more vulnerable to stress?

Women have traditionally been the caretakers in society, as well as multi-taskers, who try to be everything to everyone. This is a precursor to a lot of negative emotions; frustration, anger, sadness, and not surprisingly… a chronic sense of exhaustion.


Stress symptoms:

  • Headache

  • Insomnia

  • Anxiety

  • Fatigue

  • Panic attacks

  • Skin, gastrointestinal & muscular disorders.


Why is stress on the rise?

Workplace culture & practices today increase the pressure to do more work with less resources…


Job related factors:

  • Work overload.

  • Long hours away from home.

  • Job insecurity.

  • Conflicts & harassment.

  • Improper work environment.

  • Poor management practices.

  • Underpayment.


Reproductive Disorders

We know that some workplace hazards can affect a woman’s reproductive health, her ability to get pregnant, or the health of her unborn children.


What are those disorders?

  • Menstrual cycle effects.

  • Infertility & subfertility.

  • Miscarriage & stillbirths.

  • Birth defects.

  • Low birth weight & premature birth

  • Developmental disorders.

  • Childhood cancer.


How do they happen?

Harmful substances can enter a woman’s body through:

  • Ingestion

  • Radiation

  • Inhalation

  • Contact with skin


What can WE do?

Encourage professional women to:

  • Protect their own health & well being, and seek professional help if they feel they need it.

  • Identify work practices that result in health problems in their work.

  • Discuss how to change with their colleagues and managers.


How should we go about it?

Professional women should:

  • Know their rights and fight for them, by participating in health education, training, and monitoring programs.

  • Follow employer's safety and health work practices and procedures.

  • Eat healthy and balanced food.


  • Take real breaks from work & learn ways to relax.

  • Communicate clearly, by addressing boundaries, expectations and needs.

  • Avoid contact with hazardous substances, and avoid bringing contaminated clothing or other objects home.


What can Authorities do?

  • Labor law

  • National Council for Women (NCW)


Labor Law

And Women’s Health in Egypt

  • Women are entitled to unpaid childcare leave with a maximum of two years, for 3 times during their employed career.

  • Employers are responsible for providing health insurance for the employee.


  • Women have the right to maternity leave for 3 months after delivery, for 3 times in their employed career.


  • It is not permissible to fire an employed woman during the first 45 days after delivery.

  • It is not permissible to fire an employed woman or terminate her contract during the delivery period.


  • Informing employees of the job risks before joining the work and enforcing the use of adequate protection methods by providing the appropriate guidance.

  • Special agencies regularly inspect workplaces to ensure occupational health safety and work environment.


(NCW)

National Council for Women

In recognition of the critical role played by women at all levels of social and national development, the Government of Egypt established the National Council for Women in 2000, which aims at the advancement of women, improving their health and facilitating their full participation in the society.


NCW also advocates for the mainstreaming of women’s rights and concerns in all governmental strategic planning.

The health committee of the NCW coordinates with different ministries & organizations concerning women’s health. It was actively involved in amending the Labor Law of 2003 to address women’s health needs, especially reproductive health hazards.


RemainingChallenges

Most activities have so far been targeted at women employed in the formal sector, which represents 69% of working women.

The remaining 31% of women working in the informal sector need adequate attention and assistance to address the health hazards they face in their professional careers.


Professional women today face a multitude of complex challenges, which must be addressed through comprehensive institutional strategies as well as targeted individual solutions.


Recommendations

Assisting employed women as a multi-tasker provider and provide the appropriate, and affordable health services.

Follow-up on law implementation specially women's rights in work, social insurance , health insurance, political rights, and punishment laws.


Recommendations

Emphasize women’s work values and their economic participation in the national economy.

Necessitate periodic medical examination.


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