BENNINGTON — For many women, taking good care of their very own health can typically take a again seat to household and profession considerations. To encourage native women to take cost of their health and properly being, Greater Bennington Interfaith Community Services (GBICS) is collaborating in a nationwide Women’s Health Week beginning on Mother’s day, May 14.
“The challenge historically is for women, especially women who are parents, to find the time to take care of themselves,” stated Sue Andrews, government director of GBICS. “This week is all about encouraging women to have an annual OBGYN visit, to get preventative screenings, get active on a regular basis, eat healthfully, and to care for their mental health as well.”
Greater Bennington Interfaith Community Services serves the Bennington space in quite a lot of capacities together with a kitchen cabinet, a group backyard, and the Bennington Free Clinic. On women’s health care particularly, the group can also be in a position to present providers together with help in coordinating health insurance coverage, packages for uninsured people, an academic cooking program, and a health membership program for eligible women.
While Women’s Health Week is a nationwide program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the group at GBICS hopes that this consciousness marketing campaign will draw consideration to the plethora of health care alternatives for women in Bennington County.
“We have a regular women’s health program that is operating year round,” stated Andrews. “This is basically the federal government really lifting it up and encouraging local communities to get the word out.”
“One program that we work with is called Ladies First,” stated Cindy Krautheim, designated `women’s health champion’ for GBICS. “This is a Vermont program in response to a law passed in Congress requiring every state to provide access to cervical and breast cancer prevention programs. We cover ladies with no insurance, we cover ladies with insurance, and we cover a fitness membership for women on medicaid.”
Krautheim has made it her private aim to be a useful resource for women locally when it comes to health care.
“We have about 159 Bennington area women that come to us from Pownal up to Manchester and the mountains,” stated Krautheim. “It’s been my pleasure to talk to these ladies and help them get the care that they need.”
Through the GBICS Krautheim works with numerous group, state, and federal health organizations together with the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center to improve entry to health providers for native women. Though the group is in a position to present substantive packages and help, they discover that many women will not be conscious of the work that they do.
“In Bennington many, many women qualify for assistance,” stated Krautheim. “Across the state about 40 percent of Vermont women are eligible, so we have a valuable program that can really benefit many women.”
Despite encouraging developments, constructing consciousness is vital for the group group.
“We are out there all the time doing the work that we do, but we’re also aware that there are many women who we have not yet met,” stated Andrews. “I meet women all of the time who have never had a mammogram or a pap smear. There’s still a lot of unmet need.”
Awareness of women’s health issues is at a important juncture politically, with entry to health care and preventative screenings for a lot of threatened beneath the American Health Care Act handed by the U.S. House of Representatives on May four.
“We are very concerned about changes to the Affordable Care Act,” stated Andrews. “Of course it is not perfect, but we’ve enrolled thousands in Bennington since the health care reform began and many more people could benefit if we keep moving forward.”
Ultimately, the women’s health advocates on the GBICS hope that extra women will study concerning the providers they provide and take cost of their health.
“When I was advised about Women’s Health Week I thought about how many women here don’t take care of themselves,” stated Andrews. “That’s a real problem, because we believe that when women make their health a priority, the whole community will really benefit.”
Reach Cherise Madigan at 802-490-6471.
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