Women excel at caregiving—nurturing children, caring for their partners
and friends and attending to elderly parents. But when it comes to their
own health, women often let hectic lifestyles or concerns about money
get in the way.
Physicians advise that women follow their personal health care provider’s
recommendations for timing of health screenings and tests to help their
bodies stay healthy. Women have unique health needs during their life
span and have higher risks for chronic health conditions like diabetes,
as well as heart disease and stroke.
According to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Americans
use preventive services about half the rate they should. It is believed
that the combination of women’s lower incomes and higher out-of-pocket
health costs mean that women are more likely to delay or not receive needed
preventive services, such as annual well-woman visits.
Dr. Marya Porter of
Magnolia Obstetrics & Gynecology Clinic in Hammond and Walker agrees.
“It’s very important that women pay attention to their bodies
from pre-pregnancy through menopause,” she notes. “There are
so many different female issues that can be going on in every different
For the first time, and as part of the Affordable Care Act, HHS is adopting
a set of guidelines for women’s preventive services that builds
on and fills the gaps in existing preventive services recommendations
for women’s health. The goal of the guidelines is to help women
stay healthy at every stage of life.
To learn more about the screenings you need, download
Tests for Women(PDF).