How can humanitarian responses to health adequately take gender into account?

The period just after conflict is a time of turmoil when social norms are in a state of flux, donor funds are available and there is often a political will for change. A window of opportunity for reform in public sector institutions can open, offering a chance to “build back better” in health and gender equality more broadly. It is a time when countries could theoretically establish a health system underpinned by the principles of gender equality which identifies and responds to the different health needs of women as well as men, ensuring equitable access and health outcomes.

This policy brief looks at the context of gender and health, and how they are affected by conflict. It also assesses whether humanitarian assistance in the immediate postconflict period addresses the impact of conflict on health from a gender perspective.


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