, 9 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
Female surgeons no longer need to disguise themselves as men but gender bias is still rampant in surgery. What steps can surgeons take today to mitigate the effects of gender bias? A few strategies from our editorial @BJSurgery

This won't get better with as the # of women in surgery increases. More women in medicine has not resulted in gender equity in leadership. We can’t wait passively on the pipeline – the pipeline leaks. Or more accurately, women are pushed out of the pipe the higher it goes.
Starting with trainees: women are discouraged from surgery, receive less OR autonomy, and more often receive reference letters of minimal assurance

Strategy #1: use standardized reference letters focused on effort not appearance. If writing narrative letters, follow these tips
Women are less often introduced as Doctor and frequently have their competence questioned, despite equivalent outcomes

Strategy #2: use formal titles always & refuse to participate in “locker-room talk.” Consider: are you referring less prestigious cases to women?
Women face a motherhood penalty, even when they don't have 👶

Here's a tip, make specialty recommendations to 👩‍⚕️ based on talents and abilities, not future parenthood. Don't limit opportunites offered to 👩‍⚕️because they have children.
The incidence of sexual harassment in surgery unacceptable with few consequences for perpetrators

Strategy #4: Zero tolerance – punish don't promote offenders.

Take ownership for the culture; the standard you walk past = the standard you accept

All-male conference panels (#manel) and award winners give the impression of a lack of female experts, further reducing women’s visibility in surgery

Strategy #5: refuse to participate in MANELs, nominate worthy women for awards. Take the pledge! owen.org/pledge
These are just a few strategies that can be used immediately. Addressing gender bias in surgery will require effort from men and women together. As @JFreischlag says“osmosis won’t get us there, we need active transport”

What are your strategies?
Shout out to @fdossa for her incredible work on the editorial and this thread. Thanks to @rebgross for editing the work. And many thanks to @des_winter for offering space in @BJSurgery to provide a platform for my Sunday twitter rant.
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