Mental health

The pandemic has widened the gap between male and female mental health in Latin America.

There is a growing awareness of the importance of mental health in addition to physical health for a person’s wellbeing. A poll by Care International found that Coronavirus has sparked a mental health crisis with women being three times more likely to be affected. In patriarchal cultures, like those found in most of Latin America, women feel the burden of lockdown on their lives and responsibilities even more acutely.

The Head of Medical Staff for Mental Wellbeing at a clinic in Peru told us, “Many women have left work because their children have been studying remotely, and they have no one to leave them with.”

This loss of income and additional responsibility at home has caused increased levels of anxiety and stress that has led to a range of other mental and physical health difficulties.

“Many low-income women have no real possibilities of working until their children return to school.”

Board director at a Chilean educational institution.

Latin America’s 16.7 million female domestic workers have faced a terrible dilemma during periods of lockdown. Should they stay to look after their own family and potentially lose their only source of income, or move in with their employers and not see their family?

A Board director at a Chilean educational institution said, “Many low-income women have no real possibilities of working until their children return to school but at the same time mothers of school-age children are fearful of going back to school with the possibility of contagion.” Another concerning trend, primarily affecting women, is the increase in domestic violence. A psychologist in Chile told us that, “Even in Providencia (an upmarket district of Santiago) complaints of domestic violence have increased 500 per cent and in less wealthy neighbourhoods the situation is even worse.”

“Complaints of domestic violence have increased 500 per cent.”

A psychologist in Chile.

The World Bank has stated that, “In many Latin American countries there has been a significant increase – a doubling in some cases – in reports of domestic violence and murders of women and girls since stay-at-home orders were set up.” This increase in domestic violence has occurred at a time when the authorities are less able to respond with victim support and mediation services due to lockdown restrictions.

Much of the world is making progress towards closing the gender inequality gap but women in Latin America are suffering more than ever. This must change.

Important Notice
While the information in this article has been prepared in good faith, no representation, warranty, assurance or undertaking (express or implied) is or will be made, and no responsibility or liability is or will be accepted by Deheza Limited or by its officers, employees or agents in relation to the adequacy, accuracy, completeness or reasonableness of this article, or of any other information (whether written or oral), notice or document supplied or otherwise made available in connection with this article. All and any such responsibility and liability is expressly disclaimed.
This article has been delivered to interested parties for information only. Deheza Limited gives no undertaking to provide the recipient with access to any additional information or to update this article or any additional information, or to correct any inaccuracies in it which may become apparent.

Most recent in Health

Battling the Buzz

Dengue wars in Latin America.

Galloping Ahead

Argentina’s cloning industry breaks new ground.

Revolutionising pharmaceutical services 

Challenges and opportunities in the Americas. 

LatAm’s fight for a healthier tomorrow

The region's efforts to defeat Hepatitis.

Diabetes spikes

A public health crisis is emerging as diabetes runs rampant across Latin America.

Sleep on it

A recent study claims 3 in 4 Argentinians suffer from some form of sleep disturbance.

Health collapse

Chile’s private health insurance companies face bankruptcy at the hands of government legislation.

Cholera outbreak

PAHO delivers over a million cholera vaccine doses to Haiti as outbreak gathers pace.

Birth dearth

Latin America’s fertility rate continues to fall but what does this mean for the region?

Digital remedies

Digital pharmacies growing rapidly after pandemic induced change in consumer behaviour.