SDG 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
Women and men have different health-care needs, but an equal right to live healthily. For many women and girls, however, gender discrimination systematically undermines their access to health care, for reasons that include fewer financial resources and constraints on mobility.
This is compounded by additional burdens imposed by gender disparities which limit their ability to stay healthy. These include long hours spent on domestic work, unsafe work environments and gender-based violence, with mechanisms for prevention and protection often inadequate.
Pregnancy and childbirth pose particular risks. Every day, 830 women die from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth around the world. Globally, that amounted to about 303,000 women in 2015. Central and Southern Asia has a maternal mortality ratio of 170 deaths per 100,000 live births, which is lower than the global average of 216.
UN Women acts to advance women’s well-being and health by working with governments to improve health services for women and girls, including survivors of violence, and backing non-governmental partners in filling gaps. We strive to end practices that put women and girls in danger, such as child marriage, and support efforts to end discriminatory laws and practices impeding women’s access to sexual and reproductive health-care services.
Living with HIV and violence: Women of Ukraine speak out and build solidarity
In Ukraine, 35 per cent of women living with HIV have experienced violence since the age of 15, and lack of awareness, shelters and support services pose additional challenges for them. A UN Women-supported initiative is bringing awareness and new beginnings for HIV-positive women survivors of violence, in addition to helping them improve their health and quality of life.
Rural women access early cancer screening in Turkey
After receiving support from a UN Women initiative, a municipality in central Turkey actively reached out to thousands of rural women to educate them about their health, inform them about free health-care, and transport them to a free cancer screening centre.
From where I stand: Natalia Minayeva
Natalia Minayeva from Kazakhstan was imprisoned in the so-called “AIDS barracks”. She now works to protect the rights of HIV-positive women after receiving training under UN Women’s Gender Equality within the HIV and AIDS response project that helped her enhance her knowledge and gain public speaking and leadership skills.