– I get pissed, says Sandra Bruflot, deputy leader of the Conservative women’s forum. She believes it is time for action – and not words from the government.
– It is unbearable and embarrassing that it should be like that. I’m pissed on their behalf.
This is what Sandra Bruflot, parliamentary representative and deputy chair of the Conservative Women’s Forum, says after reading the case “The fight for women’s health”. In the case, Jenny Førde Aarskog (42) tells about a whole life filled with shame and illness.
From the age of 13 she struggled with great pain.
She was not diagnosed with endometriosis until she was 41 years old.
Bruflot reacts strongly after reading the case.
– It’s outrageous.
She believes women’s health is an under-priority in Norway.
– It can not be like that
– I often hear from women who are not aware that the diagnosis they have exists before they accidentally talk to girlfriends or google themselves. Who has not received good enough help. That can not be the case.
– It has so extremely much to say for the quality of life of people. Endometriosis is also so common. It says a bit about how taboo it has been and how many people have lived a whole life in pain without knowing what is wrong.
Watch the video below: These are the symptoms of endometriosis
Calls for new measures
Now Bruflot believes that it is time for action from the government.
In the case VG wrote earlier, the Minister of Health and Care Services, Ingvild Kjerkol, stated, among other things, that they should prioritize women’s health in order to ensure equal health services.
She also admitted that women’s health has been under-prioritized in Norway.
The Minister of Health pointed out that there will be a report from the Women’s Health Committee in March 2023. It will provide information about women’s health in Norway and will shed light on their health challenges.
Kjerkol added that they have announced in the government platform that a new strategy on women’s health will be prepared.
– A National Center for Women’s Health Research has been established at Oslo University Hospital. In the government platform, we have announced that the center will be strengthened, Kjerkol wrote via e-mail.
Bruflot believes it is important that this does not become a pillow for the government – but a start.
– Much more is needed than this. We have three vulva clinics in Norway, and they have long waiting times. The status of these disorders is low and the offer is not good enough. All the things the Minister of Health points out were set in motion by our government.
– What do you specifically think they should do?
– Several package processes should be initiated, and women’s diseases should be given priority. If a diagnosis is suspected, you must know what is going to happen – and treatment must start quickly.
Believes society has a job to do
Minister of Health Kjerkol has stated that the government is financing an investment in women’s health and gender perspectives through the Research Council of «just over NOK 20.5 million per year».
– There is a need to do more research, says Bruflot.
She also refers to a report from 2018 on women’s health from kjønnsforskning.no and says that the report shows that women often have a worse encounter with the health care system than men.
– We know that most research has been done on men. They have been the starting point in the development of the course, of medication and how to diagnose.
Need sure knowledge
Karl Kristian Bekeng, State Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Care Services writes in an e-mail to VG that several of their ongoing initiatives are particularly important for women:
– Including the work to strengthen the delivery and maternity services throughout the country, the focus on competence, good working conditions and as many permanent full-time positions in the health service as possible, and not least the review of the provisions of the Abortion Act and the follow-up of women who have abortions.
He goes on to say that they are also working to develop patient courses for diseases that often affect women, such as fatigue disease and musculoskeletal diseases.
– The Conservatives’ spokesperson is right that the previous government has initiated some of these measures, but they have been created after pressure from us, among others, and the changes in the Biotechnology Act are known to be the result of a majority between AP, SV and Frp.
He adds that they need secure knowledge to get accurate measures that lift the field of women’s health.
– The extensive work that is underway with a NOU on women’s health will give us knowledge that will be an important basis for our new women’s health strategy. We changed the mandate and included, among other things, midwifery expertise in this committee to sharpen the work towards women’s health.