Gender stereotypes can cause high mortality of COVID-19 among men

June 11, 2020  23:29

The cause of high mortality of COVID-19 among men may be gender stereotypes, said specialists of Ohio Department of Health.

According to the experts, the fact is that men are less likely to visit doctors than women, and this may be one of the main causes of high mortality from COVID-19 among men, MedicalXpress reported.

According to official data for the state of Ohio, by May 27, 2,044 residents died of COVID-19, of which 52% were men. Mortality rates over the past 3 months have often changed, and sometimes there were 10% more men than women among the deceased.

As Bill Miller - senior associate dean of research and professor of epidemiology at Ohio State University's College of Public Health - noted, the high mortality rate can be explained by differences in attitudes toward men and women.

"Men are notorious for delaying care. We have this tendency to think: 'Oh it will go away,'" Miller said. "We delay and as a result when we present to a doctor, we're sicker than when a woman would present."

Dr. Joseph Gastaldo, medical director of infectious diseases for OhioHealth, noted: "Getting sick is considered a sign of weakness, a sign of not being strong."

"It is subconsciously in the mind of a lot of men," he added.

Dr. Miller, in turn, added that men from Ohio are more likely to suffer from the lungs, heart, and kidneys diseases - these organs are the ones that the COVID-19 hits first. According to a Kaiser Family Foundation, 22% of men in the region smoke, while there are fewer women smokers in the state - about 19% of women. 

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