Ensuring the collection, analysis and reporting of sex- and gender-specific health data in Australia
On 29 May stakeholders from around Australia were invited to attend a closed forum hosted by The George Institute for Global Health and supported by the Bupa Health Foundation.
This forum was arranged in response to recent research that examined whether the leading funding bodies and peer-reviewed journals in Australia have policies and practices to support the collection, analysis and reporting of sex- and gender-specific health data and identified barriers and facilitators to the implementation of such policies and practices.
The purpose of this forum was to present the findings from our research, to have an open conversation with key stakeholders on this important issue and reach consensus about the need for and the strategies that will be required to ensure the collection, analysis and reporting of sex- and gender-specific health data in Australia. We know by comparison to other parts of the world that Australia is behind best practice.
We were pleased to have as a keynote speaker at this event, Professor Londa Schiebinger, John L. Hinds Professor of History of Science, School of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University, and Director, EU/US Gendered Innovations in Science, Health & Medicine, and Engineering Project. Professor Schiebinger is a leading international authority on gender and science whose recent work focuses on the creative power of gender analysis for discovery and innovation.
The event was opened by Hon. Dr Sharman Stone, Australia’s Ambassador for Women and Girls, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
During the event Professor Londa Schiebinger outlined why there is a need to collect, analyse and report sex- and gender-specific health data, and provided the global/North American experience in addressing this issue. Dr Cheryl Carcel presented research findings, ‘Current policies on the collection, analysis and reporting of sex- and gender-specific health data in Australia’. Dr Zoe Wainer presented the manuscript, ‘Sex differences in health research: updating policy to reflect evidence – a call to action’.
The group discussed the implications of the research findings for the Australian health environment and provided suggestions for contribution to the call for action.