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Research Letter
Physician Work Environment and Well-Being
July 2017

Perceived Discrimination Experienced by Physician Mothers and Desired Workplace ChangesA Cross-sectional Survey

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Surgical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, Weill Institute for Neurosciences, University of California, San Francisco
  • 3Center for Policy and Research in Emergency Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland
  • 4Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital, Hines, Illinois
  • 5Physician Moms Group, Los Angeles, California
  • 6Program for Clinical Research, Department of Dermatology, University of California, San Francisco
JAMA Intern Med. 2017;177(7):1033-1036. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2017.1394

Although a recent study showed that hospital mortality and readmission rates were lower for Medicare patients treated by female than male physicians,1 women physicians are paid less,2 are less likely to be promoted,3 and, on average, spend 8.5 more hours per week on household activities,4 even after adjusting for age, experience, specialty, clinical revenue, and research productivity. One mechanism may be that in current work environments, childbearing and child rearing may limit opportunities and advancement for women physicians. It is not known, however, how motherhood specifically affects perceived discrimination among women physicians.

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