New York, February 24: Salary disparity and disproportionate burden of family responsibilities are among factors that could explain why fewer women rise to leadership positions in medical colleges, a study says.
Even as more women are pursuing careers in academic medicine, and now comprise 20 percent of full-time faculty in medical schools in the US, they are not rising to senior leadership positions in similar numbers as men, the researchers said. Lack of parity in rank and leadership by gender and more women leaving academic medicine are also holding women back according to the findings.
"Our findings speak of the need for systematic review by medical schools and by accrediting organizations to achieve gender equity in academic medicine," said study coauthors Phyllis Carr from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
The researchers conducted interviews of senior leaders at 23 medical schools in the United States to evaluate the gender climate in academic medicine."Key informants reported that women were seen as the main family caregiver in certain departments and by some chairs," the study noted. The findings appeared in the Journal of Women's Health.