Book Chapter

Gender and help-seeking: Towards gender-comparative studies


Hunt K, Adamson J & Galdas P (2012) Gender and help-seeking: Towards gender-comparative studies. In: Kuhlmann E & Annandale E (eds.) Palgrave Handbook of Gender and Healthcare, Second Edition. London: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 241-255.

The question of whether there are differences in the use that men and women make of healthcare services has occupied researchers for many decades (see, for example, Cleary et al., 1982; Mechanic, 1976; Nathanson, 1977). It is often taken as a given that men make lesser use of healthcare services than women (see, for example, White and Witty, 2009). Statements such as that ‘men are less likely than women to actively seek medical care when they are ill, choosing instead to “tough it out”’ (Tudiver and Talbot, 1999: 47) are common. Men’s supposed ‘underuse’ or delayed use of healthcare is often taken to be a key part of the explanation for men’s shorter life expectancy in comparison with women (White and Witty, 2009). Their underuse of the healthcare system is constructed as a social problem (O’Brien et al., 2005: 503) and has moved up the policy agenda in countries such as the UK, the USA, Australia and Canada in recent years (see also Chapter 16 by Schofield). © Ellen Kuhlmann and Ellen Annandale 2010, 2012. All rights reserved.

Publication date31/12/2012
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Place of publicationLondon