: a r
A breakdown by diagnosis shows even greater inequities: for women
only 21% of the assessed musculoskeletal disorders' claims were
approved compared to 38% for men. For mental illness, only 12% of
the women's claims were accepted against 35% for the men's. Data
from Quebec, Canada, show similar inequities for stress-related claims
and those for musculoskeletal disorders (Lippel, 1999, 2003); however
an examination of claims related to workplace violence showed an
advantage for women (Lippel, 2001).
Another Swedish study revealed that women and men are often offered
different rehabilitation measures for similar work-related health
problems. Men, more often than women, receive education in their
rehabilitation programme, and women receive rehabilitation benefits
for a shorter period of time than men (Bäckström, 1997; Burell, 2002).
Again, a similar study in Quebec showed that educational opportunities
were more limited for injured women workers and compensation for
inability to assume usual household responsibilities was more readily
granted for household tasks usually done by men (Lippel and Demers,
In addition, women's work in many countries is still performed in the
domestic sphere and in the informal economy, and is thus invisible
in the public, economic, and institutional sphere. As a result, many
of women's work-related accidents and diseases are not recorded as
occupational, not compensated by work insurance systems and not
included in thinking about occupational health.
Occupational health problems of women in low-income
Knowledge of the health effects of working conditions in low-income
countries is extremely sparse due to the lack of systematic research
and the difficulties involved in setting up databases. It is, however,
well known that most women in low-income countries still shoulder
extremely heavy physical workloads in the household and outside of it.
men are often