Submission: Inquiry into Issues related to menopause and perimenopause


In February 2024, The Academy provided a submission to the Senate Inquiry into Issues related to Menopause and Perimenopause.

Our response has been informed by input from Fellows of the Academy and is focused on answering the Terms of Reference that relate to our remit and expertise.

The submission responds to: the economic consequences of menopause and perimenopause; the level of awareness amongst employers and workers of the symptoms of menopause and perimenopause; and current existing policies, programs, and healthcare initiatives addressing menopause and perimenopause.

Key messages:

  • There is a lack of high-quality evidence about whether perimenopause/menopause transition specifically impacts work engagement, productivity or retirement planning.
  • Menopause can cause both physical and emotional difficulties at midlife, but these symptoms may not necessarily be attributed exclusively to menopause.
  • The critical factors(s) that may adversely affect work participation and engagement for midlife women still need to be determined.
  • Australian data do not suggest that women have reduced productivity or plan to leave their jobs because of menopause.
  • Incorrectly attributing work engagement issues to menopause risks stigmatisation and inappropriate management of the issues.
  • Robust data, from a large nationally representative, unselected, sample of women, are urgently needed to better understand why some midlife women are not part of the paid workforce.
  • New policies addressing the impact of menopause at work should be informed by high-quality evidence on the key economic barriers for women at midlife.
  • Workplace policies should reflect the key concerns and needs of working women, including whether menopause leave is seen as a priority.
  • It is important to agree on the role of the workplace in supporting women with menopause. The implementation of any workplace policies or amendments pertaining to female workers should not reinforce outdated perceptions and/or negative social attitudes about menopausal women.


Read the full submission here.

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