Survey Finds That More Than 40 Percent of Women Medical Students Report Mistreatment

A new study lead by researchers at the Yale School of Medicine finds that more than one third of medical students reported experiencing at least one episode of mistreatment by faculty, peers, or clinical staff. Mistreatment included discrimination, assault, verbal abuse, and sexual harassment. The most common form of mistreatment expressed by medical students was public humiliation in front of peers.

More than 27,000 students at 140 medical schools in the United States were surveyed in 2016 or 2017. More than 40 percent of women medical student reported some type of mistreatment compared to 25.2 percent of male medical school students. Women medical students were more likely than male counterparts to be subjected to unwanted sexual advances, being denied opportunities for training or rewards based on gender, being subjected to sexist remarks or names, and receiving lower evaluations or grades for the same work, according to the study. Women of color reported the highest level of mistreatment.

Katherine Hill, a second-year medical student and lead author of the study, told the Philadelphia Inquirer: “Women and minorities are already underrepresented in the medical profession. These missed opportunities from mistreatment can accumulate over a lifetime and contribute to keeping those people out of the medical field.”

The full study, “Assessment of the Prevalence of Medical Student Mistreatment by Sex, Race/Ethnicity, and Sexual Orientation,” was published on the website of JAMA Internal Medicine. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/StudySexual Assault/Harassment


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