Where are the women orthopaedists?

By Mary Ann Porucznik

In 2007, women accounted for 49 percent of all applicants—and 48 percent of all enrollees—in medical schools, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. Within specialty societies, women make up about 35 percent of residents, according to a survey of the 17 organizations in the Specialty Society CEO Coalition.

In orthopaedic surgery, however, the story is much different, reported Mark C. Gebhardt, MD, chief of orthopaedic surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, to the combined Board of Councilors/Board of Specialty Societies (BOC/BOS) meeting last fall. Less than 10 percent of orthopaedic surgical residents are women—the lowest percentage among all residency programs.

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