Women’s health

Access to quality reproductive and gynecological healthcare is limited in Kosova. The public health system accounts for 9.2% of government expenditures, and the annual per capita government expenditure for healthcare is only 35 Euros, the lowest in Europe. The under-funded healthcare sector has a profound negative impact on women’s health, resulting in a lack of general awareness regarding gynecological health, prenatal care, and breast cancer prevention. Kosovo has one of the highest perinatal mortality (23 per 1,000 live births) and maternal death rates (7 per 100,000 live births) in Europe. Women living in rural areas have cited travel costs as a barrier to receiving gynecological and antenatal treatment.

In addition to an under-funded healthcare sector, traditional socio-cultural norms impact women’s health in Kosova. For example, some women hesitate to receive annual obstetric gynecological exams because most gynecologists are male. There is an absence of sexual education in schools; limited access to family planning assistance and free/low-cost contraceptives; and a lack of breast and ovarian cancer awareness and education. Women’s health and access to healthcare also can be impacted by domestic violence.

KWN’s Strategy

Towards addressing these issues, this Program has the long-term goal that women have access to and are accessing affordable, quality healthcare. Through its current strategy, KWN aims to improve women’s access to quality healthcare. Through this Program, KWN supports its members in organizing health education meetings with women and in carrying out advocacy initiatives that further women’s access to quality healthcare.

Prior Activities towards Women’s Right to Healthcare

  • Association for Education and Family Care Offers Sex Education

     The Association for Education and Family Care (AEFC) offers education about sexually transmitted diseases and drug abuse to elementary school children in Gjakova. The workshops provide crucial information in the absence of official curricula on these issues in Kosovo’s schools.      In an effort to make learning fun, AEF...
  • Jeta-Vita Recognizes President’s Fight against Breast Cancer

    On 17 Dec., the President of Kosovo Atifete Jahjaga welcomed Nafije Latifi, Executive Director of the Kosovo Centre for Fighting Breast Cancer Jeta-Vita, Minire Zuna-Bunjaku, a member of the Centre’s Board and Igballe Rogova, KWNExecutive Director. During the visit, Jeta-Vita expressed their gratitude for the President’s contribut...
  • KRCT Marks the International Day of Mental Health

    The Kosova Rehabilitation Centre for Torture Victims (KRCT) screened the documentary “The Call for Help”, a documentary prepared in close cooperation with persons with mental disabilities.      KRCT organized the screening to mark 10 Oct., the International Day of Mental Health. The documentary also relates to KRC...
  • Jeta-Vita Marches to Raise Awareness about Breast Cancer

    Prishtina’s city square was covered in pink. Pink ribbons wrapped around trees and hundreds of citizens wore pink ribbons and scarfs, supporting women who suffer from breast cancer. Together, they sent a strong message: they are not alone.   For the sixth consecutive year, the Kosovo Centre for Fighting Breast Cancer Jeta-Vita gathered...
  • Young Women in Gjilan Seek Psychologists in Schools

    After the successful meeting with ambitious young women in Prizren, KWN met young women in Gjilan. They knew exactly what they wanted: psychologists in schools. “It is very important to have a psychologist at school with whom we can speak freely about the teenage problems we face,” a young woman said.      &ldqu...
  • “Prehja” Encourages Check-ups to Prevent Breast Cancer

    Regular medical check-ups are crucial for identifying signs of cancer early on so that it can be treated in time. This was among the points emphasized by Dr. Mejreme Maloku-Krasniqi, an oncologist at the Public Health Centre of Kosova (PHCK) during lectures that she delivered in four villages of Skenderaj. Women’s Centre “Prehja”...
  • 5000 Feminists (including Men) Discuss Healthcare Rights

    Approximately five thousand participants from around the world attended the Third Global Conference 2013 organized by Women Deliver on May 28-30, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Government leaders, policymakers, healthcare professionals, NGO representatives, corporate leaders and global media outlets from 150 countries around the word gathered to discu...
  • NGO Prehja Provides Info about Breast Cancer

    “Most women hide… They think it’s a shame [to complain about illnesses] and that they must withstand pain instead. They feel bad telling their husbands that they are sick because they know that medical care will cost money, and their families do not have enough money.” Women’s inability to request or pay for healt...
  • Give Life: Give Blood, KWN Marks 8 March

    KWN, supported by the National Center for Blood Transfusion (NCBT), marked International Women’s Day through a street action “Give Life: Give Blood.” Between 12:00 and 15:00 on 8 Mar., 37 men and women donated blood in Mother Teresa Square in Prishtina. Marking 8 Mar. with a protest or action has become&n...
  • On March 8th, Give the Gift Life: Give Blood!

    This International Women's Day, give women the best gift of all: life. The Kosovo Women’s Network, supported by the National Center for Blood Transfusion, invites you to donate blood on March 8th at 12:00 in Mother Tereza Square in Prishtina. Your donation will help improve women's access to quality healthcare in Kosovo.
  • Jeta Vita Marches against Breast Cancer 2

    In October, the Kosovar Center for Fighting Breast Cancer (KCFBC) Jeta Vita in partnership with the Balkan Breast Cancer Initiative (BBCI) and U.S. Embassy organized a campaign to raise awareness about breast cancer during the International Month of Fighting Breast Cancer. KWN supported its efforts by distributing information about the march. ...
  • “Jeta Vita” Marches against Breast Cancer

    In October, the Kosovar Center for Fighting Breast Cancer Jeta Vita, in partnership with other organizations in Kosova, organized a campaign to raise awareness about breast cancer during International Breast Cancer Awareness Month. KWN supported this member organization by distributing information about the march against breast cancer held on 24 Oc...
  • Kosova Center for Fighting Breast Cancer Jeta/Vita, KWN Fight Breast Cancer

    The Kosova Center for Fighting Breast Cancer Jeta / Vita (KCFBC), support by KWN, organized a campaign in March to raise awareness among women and society regarding a significant health issue: breast cancer. Unfortunately, Kosova lacks data regarding the extent of this disease, but evidence from other countries in the region suggests that one in n...
  • Kosovo’s New Constitution Protects Women’s Reproductive Rights

    The Constitution of the Republic of Kosova was adopted by the Assembly of Kosova on 11 June. Despite efforts from some religious groups, particularly American “pro-life” groups visiting Kosova in the weeks prior to its adoption, the Constitution protects women’s reproductive rights. KWN sent a statement to the Constitutional Comm...
  • KWN Establishes Task Force on Health

    The Kosova Women’s Network (KWN) task force will focus on the health of women with disabilities, women affected by war and elderly women. The group will create a network of organizations with similar interests; provide trainings and advice related to health; advocate for institutional support for all health services; and push for local instit...
  • Kosovo Center for Fighting Breast Cancer JETA-VITA Raises Awareness

    On 30 October 2011, the Kosovo Center for Fighting Breast Cancer JETA/VITA organized an informative-cultural program and march with the motto “Early Detection = Survival”. Hundreds of Kosovo women and men participated in the demonstration on ‘Mother Theresa’ Boulevard in Prishtina, morally supporting women affected by breast...
  • KWN Supports Improved Access to Reproductive Healthcare for Women

    With funding from KWN, supported by UNFPA, Medica Kosova provided health services and breast cancer screening to women in rural areas. A KWN media campaign and discussions with citizens organized in each region created a forum for talking about breast cancer and other serious health issues confronting women. Also with funding from UNFPA, funds were...
  • KGSC Launches Campaign against Gender-Based Violence

    "Bonu cool, mos bjer shpullë" (Be cool, don’t slap) is the slogan of the recently launched campaign against gender-based violence among adolescents. The campaign is part of an EU-funded project implemented by the Kosovo Gender Studies Centre (KGSC), Multimedia and the Youth Initiative for Human Rights (YIHR). Rona Nishliu, w...
  • New Groups Encourage Breastfeeding among Mothers

    The “Women to Women Support Group for breastfeeding mothers” project started in October 2004 and ended in March 2005. The project was conducted in cooperation with UNICEF, the Kosova Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) Working Group, and local NGOs. The UNICEF-funded project aimed to increase the exclusive breastfeeding rate by est...

 
Kosova Women's Network