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Call for boost in research funding for chronic diseases that affect women

British doctors may have made a big advancement in finding a cure for HIV. .
British doctors may have made a big advancement in finding a cure for HIV. . THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

There is a call for more funding for research into chronic diseases at B.C. Women’s Hospital and Health Centre.

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Dr. Lori Brotto, executive director of the Women’s Health Research Institute, says women tend to develop complex chronic diseases six to nine times more often than men.

“We don’t have a good understanding of why women are more vulnerable,” Brotto said.

“Things like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic Lyme disease — there’s unfortunately very, very little research funding that’s devoted to these conditions.”

Brotto says these are essentially illnesses that don’t get better.

She says they’re doing research but they don’t have enough staffing and resources. More funding would make a huge difference.

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“It means people would be diagnosed so much sooner, and therefore also get appropriate care so much sooner as well.”

We have reached out to the Health Ministry for comment.