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Analytical summary - Gender and women's health

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Baganda woman

Females in Uganda are disadvantaged and surrounded by many inequities. This situation has been worsened by the culture, for example:

  • teenage pregnancy is among the highest in sub-Saharan Africa;
  • adolescent girls are four times more vulnerable to HIV infection than their male counterparts;
  • HIV prevalence among women is high (7.5%) compared with 5% among men;
  • married women cannot refuse sex or cannot ask their husbands to use condoms.

The maternal mortality rate remains very high.[1] More women in rural areas give birth at home compared with women in urban areas and the burden of looking after orphans, coupled with limited economic activity, has put stress on older persons and impoverished them almost to the extent of destitution.


  1. Strategic Plan. Maternal, perinatal and child death review, 2009/10–2014/15 (pdf 843kb). Kampala, Government of Uganda, Ministry of Health, Reproductive Health Division, 2009