Men’s Health Week is organized by the non-profit Men’s Health Network to raise awareness of men’s health issues within the general community. As well, it is looking to raise funds to assist in providing free educational materials and other information on a variety of men’s health topics to all organizations that need help to bring these programs to their social groups.
It’s sad that the average life expectancy of males in the US is nearly six years lower than the life expectancy for females – that’s a shortfall of almost eight percent. Even more disturbing was the fact that the difference between males and females had until recently been growing steadily larger over the years. In 1920, women lived only one year longer than men, on average. In 1950, the difference had increased to 5.5 years, and in 1970, it reached 7.6 years. Only since the start of this century did the gap close very
slightly – and then, it grew once again during the pandemic.
What are the main features of Men’s Health Week?
Each year, June is celebrated as Men’s Health Month, and one week is set aside as Men’s Health Week – this year, from the 13th to 19th of June. On Friday 17th during the week, the Wear BLUE program promotes organizing events for groups of friends, family, coworkers, and colleagues focused on the theme of blue. Activities like sporting events, BBQs and picnics based on the theme of BLUE, or just a BLUE jean day at work. Participants are encouraged to wear BLUE dresses, suits, slacks, or ties, or go for BLUE jeans, caps, or tops. A unique feature is the Blue Ribbon Pins that can be purchased from the website.
The Men’s Health Network (MHN) is trying to address the growing men’s health crisis. Its goal is to reduce the premature mortality of men and boys and increase their physical and mental health to live fuller and happier lives and, most importantly, increase government involvement in men’s health activities. Without that, existing government health networks cannot be redirected towards improving men’s health.
Of course, Health Week does not concentrate on men alone. It fully recognizes women’s role in the family’s health care, and looks for ways to enhance their participation as partners.
During Men’s Health Month, participants are encouraged to promote public awareness of men’s health issues. This can be done by disseminating information through the media on how to prevent disease, as well as reduce violence and addiction.
MHN aims to act as a national data source for information about men’s health issues, engaging with a network of health care providers and services that are dealing with men’s health issues. This is trying to highlight the need for better research funding into men’s health needs by gaining Federal and State support.
Why are men at higher risk?
|A higher percentage of men have no healthcare coverage. As a result, on average, men consult with doctors less than half as many times as women.
Research on male-specific diseases is underfunded.
|More men than women are employed in dangerous occupations.
Learned behavior encourages risky behaviors in men and boys, so that men have less healthy lifestyles from their younger ages.
Men are twice as likely as women to die from drug overdose and road accidents, and about three times as likely to commit suicide, die as homicide victims or from HIV.
|Gender-specific diseases such as prostate cancer, ischemic heart disease, cirrhosis, and other liver diseases are at least one-and-a-half times more frequent in men than women. The only major categories in which women outnumber men are breast cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.