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Gender Divide in Healthcare Professions

Formal and informal separation by gender and how it narrows opportunity and creates barriers to interprofessional collaboration

Wednesday, September 27, 2017 - 1:00 - 5:30 p.m. CST
Rhoades Auditorium

Healthcare is one of the fastest growing segments of U.S. employment, and also one of the most gender-segregated. Women comprise over 75% of healthcare workers but only 34% of practicing physicians. Females are under-represented within the higher-status physician specialties and in leadership roles throughout the healthcare sector.

Gender segregation begins early in children’s lives. It plays a key role in career selection and in gender pay gaps across every industry. The existing medical hierarchy was founded largely upon gender separation and stereotypes—women as caregivers and nurturers vs. men as leaders and doers—and creates performance expectations that are difficult to overcome. This legacy creates a challenge to interprofessional collaboration, which requires a flattening of hierarchies and unimpeded, two-way flow of communication.

This symposium will dissect the origins of gender segregation in professional life and its consequences for both individual achievement and healthcare quality. It will focus on the specific barriers to successful male-female collaboration and highlight tactics that bridge these divides. For example, the growing prevalence of women physicians has attenuated the power difference between medicine and nursing. Increasing gender diversity in other healthcare professions will have synergistic impact on workplace disparities. Efforts to enhance diversity and equality among team members will strengthen interprofessional collaboration, improve lifesaving communication, and result in better outcomes for patients and their families.

Featured Speakers

Ann Bell

Ann Bell
Ann V. Bell is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Delaware. Her research, centering on the intersection of gender and health, specifically examines processes, inequalities, and constructions of reproductive health. 
Learn more about Ann Bell

William Cody

William Cody
William Cody is an independent consultant in nursing education and leadership. He is the former President of the Atlanta Campus for Chamberlain College of Nursing, and prior to that was Director of the School of Nursing at DePaul University. 
Learn more about William Cody


Noon - 1:00 P.M. Registration

1:00 - 1:40 P.M. Keynote: Gender and its Impact on Interprofessional Collaboration

Ann Bell, PhD
Assistant Professor of Sociology
University of Delaware
Rhoades Auditorium

1:40 - 2:20 P.M. Panel discussion with audience Q&A

William Cody, RN, PhD
Roberta Glick, MD
Patrick Knott, PhD, PA-C
Qeena Woodard, DPM
Lise Eliot, PhD - moderator
Rhoades Auditorium

2:20 - 2:40 P.M. Refreshments

Rhoades Auditorium Lobby

2:40 - 3:40 P.M. Video discussion: The Roots and Consequences of Gender Division

Ann Bell, PhD
Sarah Garber, PhD
Ariel Katz, MD
Wendy Rheault, PT, PhD
Monica Cummings, DMin - moderator
Rhoades Auditorium

3:40 - 4:30 P.M. Plenary: Gender Segregation in Health Professions: Culture, Privilege & Progress

William Cody, RN, PhD
Independent Consultant in Nursing, Healthcare and Leadership
Rhoades Auditorium

4:30 - 5:30 P.M. Reception

Feet First Museum