Gender-based discrimination is prevalent in the integrated vascular trainee experience and serves as a predictor of burnout.

Conference Paper

OBJECTIVE: Trainee burnout is on the rise and negative training environments may contribute. In addition, as the proportion of women entering vascular surgery increases, identifying factors that challenge recruitment and retention is vital as we grow our workforce to meet demand. This study sought to characterize the learning environment of vascular residents and to determine how gender-based discrimination and bias (GBDB) affect the clinical experience. METHODS: A survey was developed to evaluate the trainee experience; demographics and a two-item burnout index were also included. The instrument was sent electronically to all integrated (0 + 5) vascular surgery residents in the United States. Univariate analyses were performed and predictors of burnout identified. RESULTS: A total of 284 integrated vascular residents were invited to participate and 212 (75%) completed the survey. Participants were predominantly male (64%) and white (56%), with a median age of 30 years (interquartile range, 28-32 years). Seventy-nine percent of respondents endorsed some form of negative workplace experience and 30% met high-risk criteria for burnout. More than a third (38%) of residents endorsed personally experiencing GBDB, with a significant difference between men and women (14% vs 80%; P < .001). Women were more likely than men to report witnessing GBDB (76% vs 56%; P = .003). Patients and nurses were the most frequently cited sources of GBDB (80% and 64%, respectively), with vascular surgery attendings cited by 41% of trainees. One in four female resident respondents indicated being sexually harassed during the course of training; this was significantly higher than for male residents (25% vs 1%; P < .001). Nearly half (46%) of trainees who witnessed or experienced GBDB thought that quality of patient care, job satisfaction, personal well-being, and personal risk of burnout were directly affected as a result of GBDB. GBDB was predictive of burnout (odds ratio, 1.9; 95% confidence interval, 1.1-3.5; P = .04), as were longer work hours (>80 h/wk; odds ratio, 2.8; 95% confidence interval, 1.1-7.1; P = .03). CONCLUSIONS: GBDB was experienced by 38% of integrated trainees, with women significantly more affected than men. GBDB is predictive of burnout, and this has significant implications for our specialty in the recruitment and retention of female physicians. Resources addressing these issues are needed to maintain a diverse workforce and to promote physician well-being.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Wang, LJ; Tanious, A; Go, C; Coleman, DM; McKinley, SK; Eagleton, MJ; Clouse, WD; Conrad, MF

Published Date

  • January 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 71 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 220 - 227

PubMed ID

  • 31227409

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7908058

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1097-6809

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.jvs.2019.02.064

Conference Location

  • United States