NORWALK, Conn., May 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- UBM Medica US announces that Diagnostic Imaging, a leading online publication for news and commentary of the medical imaging market, explored the challenges and opportunities for women in radiology.
Women represented about half of medical student applicants last year, but only 24 percent of radiologists are women. Why are so few women choosing radiology? And what can the industry do to support their female colleagues?
"If you don't have women in the specialty, then you don't have role models for medical students to look to or to aspire to be like," Howard Forman, MD, who led a recent expert panel discussion on this topic sponsored by the American Roentgen Ray Society, told Diagnostic Imaging. "And, if you don't have women in radiology, then you're losing the perspective of women in terms of both research and teaching, as well as the perspective of the patient as a woman."
Women tend to have misconceptions of radiology, said Elizabeth Oates, MD, president of the American Association for Women Radiologists. Female medical students erroneously worry about radiation risk, the lack of patient contact, the specialty's highly competitive nature, and the many years of training. "Students simply aren't aware of radiology as a field, what it encompasses, and what it is that we do. It's a pervasive issue," Oates explained.
To encourage more women radiologists, experts suggested:
- Senior radiologists should give female medical students accurate information about the specialty to dispel any myths, and introduce students to the field earlier in their medical school career.
- Departments, practices, and medical schools can develop additional education courses to foster career growth among female providers.
- Female radiologists can engage mentors inside and outside their departments, and be more proactive in how they socialize with colleagues at work.
In a video interview included in the feature, Diagnostic Imaging spoke with Julia Fielding, MD, of the ACR Commission for Women, who offered women radiologists practical advice on building professional relationships and advancing their careers.
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SOURCE UBM Medica US