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September 15, 1978

Women Medical Students

Author Affiliations

University of Southern California School of Medicine Los Angeles

JAMA. 1978;240(12):1238-1239. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290120032012

To the Editor.—  There have been significant increases in both numbers and percentages of medical students who are women in the past decade.1 These increases have resulted from numerous minority rights federal court decisions and the minority admissions demands placed on US medical schools by the federal capitation financial support programs. (These programs also mandated increases in numbers of medical students.)2 The post hoc self-congratulation for this progressive reform by medical educators and the medical politicians is suspect, since there is not a shred of evidence that these changes would have occurred without the mandate associated with the capitation support. This letter is written to emphasize, by demonstrating the actual numbers and percentages, how little has actually been achieved, even though women physicians and medical educators and politicians are apparently delighted.2Tables 1 and 2 show that the number of women medical students increased by a factor