I spend a lot of time talking directly to women and hearing their first-hand accounts of the problems they often have in getting information, advice and support from the medical establishment about what can be a hugely debilitating and bewildering problem.
With this in mind I have approached two women who are in a good position to help, within the top echelon of the Conservative Government and responsible for Women and Equalities.
They are Justine Greening, Minister for Women and Equalities, and Caroline Dinenage, who is Parliamentary Under Secretary of State. I wrote to Justine and Caroline two weeks ago but to date have not received a reply from either.
Here’s the draft of my letter, written to both ministers personally.
My name is Diane Danzebrink and I run a service called Menopause Support which offers women who are struggling with their symptoms information, advice and support. I am also the lay media spokesperson for the RCOG and an ambassador for the BMS. My own experience of surgical menopause made me realise how little support is available and I have since attended the specialist nurse training on menopause provided in conjunction with the BMS.
As you may have seen there has been quite a lot of media attention around the programme that Kirsty Wark has made for BBC Scotland including interviews on the Victoria Derbyshire programme last Thursday, which I was involved in. I have attached the links if you have not seen the programmes.
I speak to women every day of every week who are struggling with both mental, emotional and physical symptoms. Many of these women are finding their doctors ill equipped to help them and some are simply dismissive. Women are also having to leave jobs and careers that they have worked a lifetime to create due to a lack of understanding and support.
I would like to know what you as Minister for Women and Equalities are doing to address these issues? I would welcome the opportunity to discuss this with you in person in London
I look forward to your reply.
I’m hoping that this will provoke a response from the government, which has been largely silent on the subject even after Kirsty Wark’s recent programme.