Skip to main content

Military Health System

New MHS Podcast Explores Women’s Health in the Military

Image of . A new podcast about women's health is available for download.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Women's Health

Over the past 25 years, the U.S. military has incorporated servicewomen into every occupational specialty, where they have demonstrably improved mission capability and success.

However, the availability and scope of women's health services within the Military Health System continues to vary significantly, with some MHS providers unfamiliar with delivering women's health care, particularly to servicewomen in the field. Helping overcome the specific health care obstacles servicewomen encounter is crucial to ensuring the readiness, health, and well-being of the military. This is one of the reasons why the MHS is launching its new podcast series, Wise Health for Women Warriors.

Wise Health for Women Warriors pulls experts from across the MHS's Women and Infant Clinical Community to answer the most frequently asked questions that military providers have about women's health. The podcast seeks to educate and empower MHS primary care providers to improve health care delivery and outcomes for servicewomen, before, during, and after deployment and throughout their military careers.

The Department of Defense has made great strides over the past 10 years regarding women's health – servicewomen now get 12 weeks of maternity leave instead of six weeks. And female service members are now protected from deployment for 12 months after childbirth. The podcast seeks to build on this progress by providing information and insight about overcoming health care challenges that servicewomen face.

Men don't have to think about changing a tampon or pad down range; or handling urinary urgency, infections, or incontinence when the nearest bathroom is half a mile away. After childbirth, men aren't required to return to work while still recovering and managing breastfeeding – and then go pass a fitness test. Men do not experience these demands on their body or women's age limitations on fertility.

I have experienced these challenges myself, both as a mother and a physician. In 2012, I had only six weeks of maternity leave and had to deploy six months postpartum. I had to pump and dump my breast milk all over Kuwait and Afghanistan while making my way through transient tents to get to Jalalabad so I could provide breast milk for my baby for at least six months. Professionally, I have met many servicewomen who delay starting a family to focus on their careers – a common and often difficult choice that makes infertility a real, widespread challenge.

Wise Health for Women Warriors offers an informed dialogue on real-world health care challenges servicewomen encounter and clinically proven ways to help address them. Through this podcast, my guests and I – and the Military Health System – are striving to make things better for the women coming after us.

Empowering Servicewomen

Servicewomen represent a growing and increasingly important subgroup of MHS health care recipients. According to the Defense Health Board's November 2020 report Active Duty Women's Health Care Services, women account for 17% – more than one in six – of active-duty personnel, totaling approximately 225,000 women across all military branches. More than four in 10 MHS active duty and beneficiaries are women, and women have emerged as the fastest-growing active-duty population.

The DHB report also found that servicewomen often lack access to – and even awareness of – products and services for self-diagnosis and self-care of treatable and preventable women's health issues, particularly in operational environments.

In response, the DHB recommended empowering servicewomen to perform self-care as equal partners in their care, incorporating gender-sensitive customization where appropriate. The report endorsed using digital health technology as a scalable, low-cost way to deliver health information and services to women in the military at the point of need, especially in remote and resource-constrained environments.

In addition to this podcast, the MHS offers a breadth of evidence-based digital health technology resources for women’s health. One of these is Decide + Be Ready, a mobile health app specifically designed to support deployed servicewomen in making educated decisions on contraceptives, reproductive health, and family planning.

Investment in the Future

It is challenging for women sometimes to stay in the military as they build a family and build a career. As servicewomen increase their prevalence and prominence in the U.S. military, the MHS must continue to meet them where they are, understand their needs and situations from their perspective, and help them best address those needs with tools that work best for them.

This approach to improving women’s health care is an important investment in the future. How the MHS addresses women's health issues directly impacts the number of women in the military.

The more we can make life better for servicewomen by proactively focusing on their specific health needs, the more we remove the question of whether women will have the medical resources and provider support they need to accomplish their mission, the more women will choose to join and stay

You also may be interested in...

Are You Prepared for Flu Season? Let TRICARE Help.

Article
11/1/2021
A hospital corpsman administers an influenza vaccination to an airman as part of a seasonal shot exercise onboard Naval Air Station Sigonella.

Flu season is here once again. Are you prepared? With the COVID-19 Delta variant​ continuing to spread and our health care system overburdened, it’s important for all of us to help combat the spread of flu. And the best way to do so is to get a flu shot.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Total Force Fitness

Pregnancy Health Alert: COVID-19 Vaccine is Strongly Recommended

Article
10/20/2021
Pregnant women gets the COVID-19 vaccine

Get vaccinated for COVID-19 if you’re pregnant or trying, DOD and CDC and advise.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Women's Health

Wise Health for Women Warriors Podcast Supports Women's Health

Article
10/18/2021
WICC Podcast

The Women and Infant Clinical Community developed the Wise Health for Women Warriors podcast to support primary care managers who need additional information when caring for women warriors.

Recommended Content:

Women's Health

DOD launches "First Aid For Severe Trauma" for HS students

Article
9/2/2021
High school students at a conference in Orlando, Florida

DOD's National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health launches "First Aid For Severe Trauma" designed for Grades 9-12, with Red Cross, Homeland Security.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support

PCOS is a common condition for women, but it's often undiagnosed

Article
8/20/2021
A certified nurse midwife performs an ultrasound on a patient

The NIH describes PCOS as under-recognized, underdiagnosed, and understudied

Recommended Content:

Women's Health

New Flag and Patch Symbolize Growth at the Defense Health Agency

Article
8/19/2021
Service members from the Army, Air Force and Navy display the new Defense Health Agency patch following a reflagging and repatching ceremony at Defense Health Agency Headquarters in Falls Church.

The DHA will reveal a new flag and seal in a ceremony August 20 to signify the unity of all services under one joint combat support agency.

Recommended Content:

Defense Health Agency | Military Health System Transformation | Health Readiness & Combat Support

New Stop the Bleed course designed specifically for HS students

Article
7/7/2021
A medical care training exercise

New First Aid for Severe Trauma Training Can Help High School Students ‘Stop the Bleed’

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Education & Training

Medical Advances Since Gulf War Boil Down to Increased Lives Saved

Article
6/25/2021
Medical personnel training on how to treat a neck wound

Not all medical advances since the first Gulf War are highly technical.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Research and Innovation

DHA Spearheads Effort for Working Dog Research Collaboration

Article
6/25/2021
Picture of three different dogs

Working Dog Forum explored research to keep dogs in top form.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Veterinary Service | Public Health | Research and Innovation

Army’s 773rd administers mobile COVID-19 testing during DEF21

Article
6/4/2021
Three military personnel, wearing masks and lab coats, pose for a picture in an Albanian lab.

Approximately 800 Army Reserve soldiers from the U.S. and Europe participated in DEFENDER-Europe 21.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Readiness Capabilities

ADVISOR brings support to medical personnel in austere environments

Article
5/27/2021
Photo of Michael Kile, LPN, the operational readiness program manger

The Military Health System offers the Advanced Virtual Support for Operational Forces program, or ADVISOR, for remote military medical professionals.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Health Readiness & Combat Support | Health Readiness & Combat Support

DOD/VA Collaborated to Combat Mental Health Challenges Women Face

Article
5/25/2021
Military personnel putting on a gas mask

In an area dominated by men, the military can still be a harsh environment for women, commanders say.

Recommended Content:

Mental Health: Seeking Care with TRICARE | Women's Health

Run Toward the Fire: My journey through mental illness

Article
5/21/2021
Military personnel posing with their children

Air Force Lt. Col. details her struggle with depression, anxiety and suicide ideation

Recommended Content:

Women's Health

Signs and symptoms of a stroke, and what to do about them

Article
5/18/2021
Infographic about the sign of a stroke

For Stroke Awareness Month, we highlight some of the most important facts about strokes in men and women.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence

Service women: Plan for your future health care now

Article
5/13/2021
Graphic that has images of different women with the words "women's health transition training"

The online, self-paced Women’s Health Transition Training makes everything you need to know about VA women’s health services available anytime, anyplace.

Recommended Content:

Women's Health
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 46 - 60 Page 4 of 7
Refine your search
Last Updated: August 03, 2022
Follow us on Instagram Follow us on LinkedIn Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on YouTube Sign up on GovDelivery