Gender Disparity in Leadership in Medicine

Gender Disparity in Leadership [1]

For many years the idea of gender disparity in leadership positions in medicine has been argued and although this problem has been discussed for many years there has not been much to be done to change gender disparity in leadership positions in medicine. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 80% of the healthcare workforce is made up of women, however, only 20% of women hold leadership roles in medicine and only 19% of hospitals and 4% of healthcare companies are led by women [2]. Furthermore, this gender disparity exists not only in hospitals but in academic medicine as well. In 2012, in the journal of nature, it was found that the scientists that nature profiled, only 18% were women, and only 19% of the commissioned articles were published by women [3]. This is mainly caused by the hierarchical system that has been in medicine since it began that favors men more than women and that is fueled by implicit gender and maternal bias towards women. This gender disparity in medicine leads to an insufficient workplace that does not have good employee retention and satisfaction. Furthermore, there is a widespread consensus that gender equality, especially in healthcare, promotes economic growth and improves nutrition. This can affect communities in that a more gender-diverse workplace is suited better to treat patients of all backgrounds and creates more improved patient outcomes [4]. This is all relevant to the healthcare workforce and it shows that gender equality in the workplace has many positive effects on all individuals. 

[1] “Healthcare Workforce Statistics.” 2019. 2019.

[2] Kacik, Alex. “Few Women Reach Healthcare Leadership Roles.” Modern Healthcare. May 22, 


[3] Rochon, Paula A., Frank Davidoff, and Wendy Levinson. “Women in Academic Medicine 

Leadership. Academic Medicine 91, no. 8 (August 2016): 1053–56.

[4] Shannon, Geordan, Melanie Jansen, Kate Williams, Carlos Cáceres, Angelica Motta, Aloyce 

Odhiambo, Alie Eleveld, and Jenevieve Mannell. “Gender Equality in Science, Medicine, and Global Health: Where Are We at and Why Does It Matter?” The Lancet 393, no. 10171 (February 2019): 560–69.

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