Gender Gap for First Authors of Perspectives in Peds Journals

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Gender Gap for First Authors of Perspectives in Peds Journals
Gender Gap for First Authors of Perspectives in Peds Journals

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 8, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Women are underrepresented among physician first authors of perspective-type articles in prominent pediatric journals, according to a study published online July 20 in JAMA Network Open.

Julie K. Silver, M.D., from Harvard Medical School in Boston, and colleagues examined the gender-related profile associated with authors of perspective-type articles published in the four highest-impact general pediatric journals -- Academic Pediatrics, JAMA Pediatrics, The Journal of Pediatrics, and Pediatrics -- between 2013 and 2017 to determine whether women physicians were underrepresented.

The researchers identified 425 perspective-type articles, with physicians listed as the first author on 79.5 percent. Among first-author physicians of known gender, women were underrepresented (41.7 percent). This underrepresentation was particularly noted among physician first authors of articles categorized as scholarly versus narrative in nature. Furthermore, women were underrepresented among last authors and co-authors of articles attributed to both men and women physician first authors, but this underrepresentation was more pronounced if a man physician was the first author.

"Because perspective-type articles provide an opportunity for authors to express their opinions, provide insights that may influence their field, and enhance their academic resumes, there is a need for pediatric journal editors and leaders of medical societies who are associated with these journals to ensure the equitable inclusion of women in medicine," the authors write.

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