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Sexual Harassment in Obstetrics and Gynecology Postgraduate Training

Purpose: To determine the prevalence of sexual harassment(SH) in obstetrics and gynecology(OBGYN) residency and fellowships.

Background: SH is a common problem the U.S. with 1 in 3 women experiencing some form of it in their lifetime. According to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM,) 24-50.4% of female medical students experienced sexual harassment, which is more than their peers in science and engineering, and 220% more than female students in non-science fields.

Methods: We conducted a voluntary, anonymous survey study of all U.S. OBGYN trainees in ACGME-accredited residency and fellowship programs. The survey included the validated Sexual Experience Questionnaire (SEQ) short form, and other questions including demographics. The NASEM definition of SH was used in the study and described to the participants in the survey instructions. Descriptive statistics were utilized.

Results: The survey was distributed to 1473 trainees in the US; 395 responses were received (26.8%response rate: 86%females, 13.5%males). 20.6% of participants (78/378: 21.1%females, 21.7%males) responded yes to having been sexually harassed during their OBGYN training. Based on the SEQ questionnaire, 69.1% OBGYN trainees (253/366) had experienced some form of SH. Sexist hostility was the most common form of SH followed by crude behavior (211/253,83.4%;182/253,71.9% respectively). Males and senior OBGYN attendings (154/208,74.4%;110/395,27.9% respectively) were named the most common perpetrator; the operating room was the number one location for SH followed by Labor and Delivery (97/395,24.6%;83/395, 21.0% respectively).

Discussions: Although OBGYN is a female dominated field, the rate of SH of trainees remains high according to our data.

Topics: CREOG & APGO Annual Meeting, 2020, Student, Resident, Faculty, Osteopathic Faculty, Residency Director, Residency Coordinator, Professionalism, Interpersonal & Communication Skills, GME,

General Information


Intended
Audience
Student,Resident,Faculty,Osteopathic Faculty,Residency Director,Residency Coordinator,
Competencies
Addressed
Professionalism,Interpersonal & Communication Skills,
Educational
Continuum
GME,
Educational
Focus
Clinical Focus

Author Information

Kimia Menhaji, MD; Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai; Anne Hardart, MD; Stephanie Pan, MS

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