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€12m allocated to researching gender differences in healthcare

THE NETHERLANDS. The health ministry has allocated €12m to a study into how men and women with the same illness display different symptoms and respond differently to treatment.

‘We treat women in the way that best applies to men,’ health minister Edith Schippers told a conference on Sunday. ‘We do not know enough about how we should do things differently for women.’

For example, women experience different symptoms when having a heart attack and family doctors are often not sufficiently aware of this, Schippers said. Women are also more likely than men to suffer from depression.

In addition, medicines can have different side effects on women. This is partly because many drugs have been primarily tested on men, Schippers said.


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