A Check-Up on the Progress of Women in Academic Radiology

A new study by scholars at the medical schools of Yale University, Stanford University, and the University of Maryland, examines the progress of creating a more diverse U.S. academic radiology physician workforce in the context of the available pipeline of medical students and trainees. The researchers collected data on sex, race, and ethnicity among medical school applicants, graduates, radiology residency applicants, residents, and different levels of academic radiology faculty in 2010 and in 2019.

The study found that in 2010, women made up 46.9 percent of all students entering U.S. medical schools. By 2019, women were 51.6 percent of medical school matriculants.

In 2010, women were only 27.8 percent of all residents in radiology. By 2019, 27.0 percent of the residents in radiology were women. The authors note that ‘the increased female representation at the medical school applicant and matriculate levels has not translated into increased applicants for radiology residency.” They also speculate that a lower level of patient contact in the field of radiology may dissuade women from entering the field.

In 2010, the percentage of all radiology instructors who were women was 36 percent. Women were 32 percent of assistant professors, 23 percent of associate professors, and 17 percent of full professors. In 2019, women were 38 percent of radiology instructors, 31 percent of assistant professors, 28 percent of associate professors, and 22 percent of full professors. So some progress was made at most academic levels. But there is a long way to go to even approach gender equality in the field. Women made up 13 percent of radiology department chairs in 2010. This increased to 17 percent in 2019.

The full study, “Diversity in Radiology: Current Status and Trends Over the Past Decade,” was published on the website of the Radiological Society of North America. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: DiversityGender GapResearch/Study


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