Medicine & Health

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 1 of 1
  • (2023) Hallam, Laura
    There has been significant work in recent decades to address gender bias, exclusion and lack of sex and gender consideration in health and medical research, including identification of gender data gaps and implementation of policies to improve sex and gender consideration in research design and reporting. This thesis aimed to understand the impact of this context on current research practice and identify ways to further support meaningful change that can lead to improved health outcomes. These aims were addressed through three original research studies employing either quantitative or qualitative methods and a perspective on the field written in collaboration with other early- and mid-career researchers. Two quantitative analyses of published research were conducted to identify if the policy landscape had impacted research practice. In the field of women’s health, publications still largely focused on reproductive health issues for women in their reproductive years, and few papers aimed to conduct sex and gender analyses. In Australian health and medical research publications, sex and gender reporting were not significantly influenced by established guidelines. There was a lack of clarity around terminology, data collection and reporting of sex and gender data. A perspective on the field was written, highlighting the need to contextualise sex and gender research to improve women’s health. A Theory of Change was developed to map ways to further support changes in research practice and facilitate potential improvement in health outcomes. These pieces of work collectively identified a broad range of activities that are needed across the health and medical research sector, and along the evidence, translation and implementation pipeline. These include improving understanding of sex and gender, providing education, guidelines, policies and standards to support key actors and implementing continuous monitoring and feedback to maintain best practice and achieve a positive impact on health. In conclusion, greater discourse and policy implementation promoting consideration of sex and gender in health and medical research has not had a large impact on research practice, either in the field of women’s health, or in Australian health and medical research. Sector-wide, coordinated activities are needed to support changes in research practice to better consider sex and gender and to effectively translate and implement research findings to improve health outcomes.