How COVID-19 pandemic impacts women on the front lines

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The majority of healthcare providers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic are women.

Oftentimes, it’s women who are responsible for taking care of children and family. For many, those responsibilities are combined, with women working full-time, and tending to their families.

Marina Baker is a single mom and an essential worker. She tests patients for COVID-19 every day at work.

“It’s crazy, I’ve never been so stressed out and not have any help,” said Baker.

Baker says the challenges of work, parenting, and now homeschooling her 13- and 16-year-old are felt into the late evening hours.

“It’s 10 o’clock at night and we’re still doing homework and we haven’t eaten dinner,” said Baker.

Dr. Shauntice Allen with UAB’s School of Public Health is diving into the added stresses women face during this pandemic in a Facebook live video on Saturday. A panel of experts will be alongside her answering any questions women have as they learn to navigate a new normal. Dr. Allen wants women to know you aren’t alone and you matter.

“Women, all women, whoever they are, whatever social class they’re in, to know we are so critically important to every aspect of how this pandemic is being handled,” said Dr. Allen.

More than 75% of healthcare jobs are held by women in the U.S. Roughly one in four mothers are raising their children alone. Baker said she is feeling the added weight of being a single mom in a global pandemic.

“Unfortunately society has made it the normal though. I guess I’m just used to it though, I really am. But it’s not fair, it’s hard,” said Baker.

Baker said it is thanks to a strong support system she is able to juggle it all.

To tune into UAB’s live panel, click here. The discussion will be held on Saturday, April 25 at 2 p.m. Email questions to Dr. Shauntice Allen at sallen1@uab.edu before 1 p.m. CST Saturday or ask your questions during the Facebook Live. 


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