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The gender of radiation oncologists treating breast and genitourinary cancers at US comprehensive cancer centers
  1. Shearwood McClelland III1,
  2. Christina C Huang1,
  3. Reshma Jagsi2,
  4. Richard C Zellars1
  1. 1 Department of Radiation Oncology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
  2. 2 Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  1. Correspondence to Richard C Zellars, Department of Radiation Oncology, Indiana University School of Medicine, 535 Barnhill Drive, RT 041, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA; rzellars{at}

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Unfortunately, the representation of women in the Radiation Oncology workforce in the United States has long been disproportionate to that of women among medical school graduates and academic faculty throughout medicine.1 2 Over the past three decades, the representation of women in the academic Radiation Oncology workforce has risen approximately 0.3% per year,3 which would take 50 years to result in gender equality in faculty positions.4 5 Even at the recent increased rate of women representation in Radiation Oncology residency of 1.5% per year between the classes of 2016 and 2022, there would remain a substantial period of time for this increase in resident representation to translate into achieving gender equity in the academic workforce.6

Certain cancer disease sites are dominated by patients of a particular gender; two of the largest being breast cancer and genitourinary cancer (given that prostate cancer treatment is far more common than treatment of other malignancies of the genitourinary system that affect men and women alike). We sought to evaluate the present-day Radiation Oncology workforce in these two subspecialities to determine the gender makeup of Radiation Oncology providers comprising these fields.

A compilation of radiation oncologists treating breast cancer and genitourinary cancer was obtained from internet searches of the 51 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centres in the United States from August–September 2019. Under-represented minority status (defined as African-American race and/or Hispanic ethnicity) was documented as previously described.7 Data were subsequently analysed using t-tests and Fischer’s exact test, with statistical significance assigned at p<0.05 (GraphPad Software, San Diego, California, USA) and ORs accompanied …

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  • Contributors Conception and design: RCZ, SM, CCH; Data collection: SM, CCH; Statistical analysis: SM; Data interpretation: SM, CCH, RJ, RCZ; Manuscript writing: SM; Final approval of manuscript: SM, CCH, RJ.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests Dr McClelland receives research funding from the Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation. Christina Huang was supported by the Indiana Clinical and Translation Sciences Institute Medical Student Training Applied to Research Fellowship Award. Dr Jagsi has stock options as compensation for her advisory board role in Equity Quotient, a company that evaluates culture in healthcare companies; she has received personal fees from Amgen and Vizient and grants for unrelated work from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Greenwall Foundation, the Komen Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for the Michigan Radiation Oncology Quality Consortium. No author has any conflicts of interest.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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