“We call it a double burden,” says Dr. Tarsila Vieceli, who spends her work hours in a Covid-19 unit in Porto Alegre, in the south Brazil.
“Women work during business hours, and when they get home it’s like a second job: They are responsible for cooking, cleaning and raising their children,” she said.
Vieceli is one of the frontline workers in the pandemic who has been sharing her stories about the additional pressure they face as women.
Another is Tsion Firew, who works in emergency medicine in New York, along with her role as special advisor to the ministry of health in Ethiopia.
She told the BBC that the majority of health workers in the East African country and the US were women, but the main leadership was primarily men, which she says has life-threatening consequences.
“We have noticed how true PPE [protective kit] ]is made for men, “he said.” Even hair covers are made for men. “
And the challenges women face do not stop at the hospital door.
In South Africa, college student Basi Letebele is looking for a job after losing her job at a supermarket a few weeks ago. She was using the money to pay for her studies and to support her three-year-old daughter.
“One of the apps I found said they would prefer men. That discouraged me, because in this economy we are all looking for work.
“What hope do we have as women if there are jobs that men prefer?”
The three women were talking to BBC Outside Source, as part of the Rethink series, to see how the world should change after the pandemic.