Regional outreach boosts female medical residency recruitment

Regional outreach boosts female residency recruitment

Outreach to female medical students may improve recruitment into orthopedic surgery resident programs, according to a study recently published in the Journal of Surgical Education.

Brandon E. Earp, M.D., from Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Tamara D. Rozental, M.D., from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, both in Boston, and colleagues developed a free, half-day program to expose female medical students to orthopedic , which included skills workshops and panel discussions. Anonymous surveys were used to grade participants' satisfaction with the utility of the information presented, the comfort level in interacting with faculty, and how the experience may have impacted their potential interest in orthopedic surgery. E-mail follow-up included determining students' ultimate career choices and match results.

The researchers reported that over three years, 155 female medical students participated in the program and 97 percent found it useful. Among 59 students eligible for the match, 22 matched into an orthopedic surgery residency. Of match-eligible first- and second-year participants, eight of 36 matched in orthopedic surgery. Also, 14 of 23 match-eligible third- and fourth-year participants successfully matched in orthopedic surgery programs.

"While we recognize that not all have access to women , and the experience may not be replicated everywhere, we hope, that every residency in the country considers organizing a similar program at the medical school level to increase the diversity in our field," Rozental said in a statement.

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