a group of people talking in path following a run

While there are some clear differences between women and men’s health, almost half of all adult men and women will experience mental health problems in their lifetime and live with one or more of 10 chronic conditions. Some of the largest risk factors for disease for both are not enough physical activity and living with excess weight or obesity.

Women’s health

While women are generally good at accessing healthcare, they can face poorer health outcomes and unique challenges. They often take on caregiver roles, experience gender bias, and have specific sexual and reproductive health needs. Some common conditions that women face include cancer (breast, bowel, skin and lung), mental health and substance abuse disorders, cardiovascular disease and arthritis. Women are also more likely to be diagnosed with dementia than men, and experience greater rates of domestic, sexual and family violence.

Endometriosis is a complex and debilitating chronic condition that can be hard to diagnose, with those suffering waiting an average of seven years before diagnosis. Murray PHN funds an endometriosis and pelvic pain clinic in Bendigo, which is a service that is available via referral at Bendigo Community Health Services.

Key resources and support for women
  • Jean Hailes for Women’s Health – an organisation that provides information on women’s health topics
  • Women’s Health Victoria – a state-wide woman’s health promotion, advocacy and support service.
  • WIRE – a Victoria-wide free generalist information, support and referral service for all women. Available Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. Call 1300 134 130
  • 1800 my options – is a free helpline for information about contraception, pregnancy option and sexual health in Victoria. Available Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. Call 1800 696 784

Men’s health

Men in Australia on average have a shorter life expectancy than women and die more often than women from preventable causes. While their access to healthcare has generally improved over time, it still remains behind females. Delays in seeking help can lead to later diagnosis and more limited treatment options. Some common conditions that men face include mental and sexual health illnesses, cancer (prostate, skin, bowel and lung), cardiovascular disease, diabetes and injuries including back pain.

Key resources and support for men
  • Healthy Male – a national organisation that provides information on male health
  • Men’s sheds – more than 1000 community-based, non-commercial organisations across Australia, open to all men and aim to improve health and wellbeing by reducing social isolation
  • MensLine Australia – offers free professional 24/7 telephone counselling support for men with concerns about mental health, anger management, family violence (using and experiencing), addiction, relationship, stress and wellbeing. Call 1300 78 99 78

Last Update: May 24th, 2024