Calls for Jersey's new government to address women's health inequality

Sophie Mollet had to save up for IVF treatment in the UK and now has an 11-week-old son. She would like to see more done to support women in Jersey going through the IVF process. Credit: ITV Channel TV

There are calls for Jersey's new government to address health inequalities between men and women in the island. Better access to IVF and cancer screenings are both included in the UK's first ever women's health strategy and now medical professionals want the island to follow suit.

It comes as a recent UK government survey reveals nearly 85% of women feel they are being ignored when trying to get the help they need.

Sophie Mollet had to save up for IVF treatment in the UK, as the treatment is not provided in Jersey. She now has an 11-week-old son, but says getting to this stage has been an expensive and stressful process:

"I feel like in the UK you can just have the day off work and go to your clinic and have the procedure done. Us in Jersey, we have to take time off work to fly to the UK. I think they could help with the funding, it would just take a huge amount of stress off."

Dr Jessica Langtree-Marsh and retired Consultant Gynacologist Neil MacLachlan started a women's welfare clinic around one year ago in St Helier.

Dr Jessica Langtree-Marsh is running a women's clinic in Jersey. Credit: ITV Channel TV

Mr MacLachlan says so far their work has helped to reduce hospital referrals on the issues they are dealing with by 30%. He wants more to be done to address the health gap:

"You're having to train specialists in women health problems. We know that even though women live a little bit longer than men, they suffer far more from various medical conditions throughout their life so there is a really serious health gap between the two sexes."

Dr Langtree-Marsh says the help they are providing is much needed:

"Gynecology waiting lists have got longer, more than any other specialty. I think that just explains to us really, why is it a women's only specialty, the waiting list is longer than any other?"

The health professionals running the clinic say the costs are currently being passed on to the patients. They would like to see government funding to support the hub, with the potential to open more across the island.

The hope is that with a record number of women in the Council of Ministers, the needs of women will be taken more seriously than before.