HomeThe Dating Issue

Women in Medicine – Working Together for Change

By March 31, 2019 85 Comments

By: Natasha Sriraman

Indian, American. Immigrant, Culture. Sexism, Racism. Wife, Mother, Physician.
These labels, these titles have been, and continue to be such a prominent part of my
life. They define me., like many, were pushed by their immigrant parent to always work
hard and to be the best. There is always an assumption, that being Indian, automatically
defined me in certain ways. Although I am a physician, married to another Indian
physician, my road was definitely not linear, but quite circuitous. As an Indian, as a
female, I have faced both racism and sexism.
It is not always easy to be a woman in medicine. First and foremost, like in many
professions, there is a wage/salary gap based on gender. I have often hear, both in the
press and on an individual level, that women physicians get paid less since they do not
work as hard as their male counterparts and choose to see fewer patients. There is also
the viewpoint that women get paid less since female doctors “can” work part-time since
the male is usually the breadwinner of the family. These views are not only incorrect but
also are not supported by data.
First, let’s debunk the myth that men and women are paid equally. I, personally, have
had this conversation with administrators at institutions where I’ve worked, and they
simply did not believe me.
The Wall Street Journal looked at Census Bureau Data over 5 years and found that male
doctors, working full-time made $210,000, while women physicians made 64% less
($135,000). And it is not only in the medical field, in fact, the study showed that other
occupations that required higher education (financial advisors, compensation managers,
judges) had large gender wage gaps, as well.
Next, it has been said that women physicians don’t work as hard. Whether we work full-
time or part-time, let’s clarify something. We are working more hours than most male
physicians. I have done it all while having 3 kids within 5 years: full-time, part-time and
stay-at-home mom. As someone married to a critical care intensivist physician, I
changed my career path when my kids were younger.
As many working women can attest to, none of us work “just” part-time. Instead we are
working 2, maybe 3 jobs when you add in managing the household, kids, spouse,
cooking and cleaning. Studies show that when we take time off/cut hours to take care of
young children, women with higher education (graduate degrees) miss out on full-time
benefits while being hurt more by this salary penalty.
A recent NY Times article shows that even though there are more women earning
college degrees (and entering medical school, for that matter), the number of women in
the labor force has plateaued since the 1990’s. Why? Because despite our higher
education, motherhood is a constant juggling act and, is in fact, much harder than
expected. Also, many women felt that returning to our career was ‘not good’ for the
child/family and thus, stepped back to care for their family. While women continue do
to more paid work, studies show that men have not increased their childcare and
housekeeping to the same extent, exacerbating the mismatch of managing a household.
This study didn’t address the judgment among women, that many female physicians
face, when we work long hours and often are away nights and weekends, and can miss
family events. When I was torn about returning to fellowship when my first born was only 6 months old, I was told: “good mothers don’t work” and “I don’t know how you
can leave your own child to take care of other kids.”
Next, let’s address the lack of maternity leave and the lack of family-friendly policies in
the United States. While breastfeeding support and maternity leave has slowly
improved, the United States is severely lagging behind. In fact, we are 1 of only 5
nations, the ONLY developed nation, that does not provide paid maternity leave.
Finally, let me address our skills and the quality of care we provide as women
physicians. A recent study of almost 600,000 cardiac patients showed that those who
were treated by a female doctor received better care and had lower mortality rates.
Another study showed that patients treated by a female physician were less likely to be
readmitted to the hospital, and also had lower mortality rates.
Researchers at Johns Hopkins showed that female primary care doctors spent more
time listening to their patients than their male counterparts. Male physicians interrupt a
patient within 47 seconds to redirect them, while female physicians waited an average
of 3 minutes before interrupting the patient. But this increased time comes with a cost.
Since we spend more time with patients, we are frequently running behind which
translates into a longer day. And in the era of medical care dictated by administrators
and insurance companies, those physicians who see more patients and bill more are the
ones who are rewarded.
As women physicians, we have come together to address these ill-informed comments
from an unprofessional colleague. But we continue to fight the inequity we face in the
workplace. And it doesn’t affect just physicians. Women in other professions are also
adversely affected. We also need the support of our male colleagues to address wage
transparency because unlike other industries, the medical profession doesn’t openly
discuss salaries. Only then can we, as women physicians, become proactive about
negotiating salaries.
It is not only about extra income, it is about eliminating an unconscious bias that exists
in medicine. While Women’s Rights are front and center within the political and
legislative realm, we have to continue to focus on the work that needs to be done.
Whether it’s wage discrimination, sexual harassment or the paucity of maternity-leave
policies, our voices are much stronger when we all work together, physicians in different
specialties, women from different careers.
‘Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.’ ~Helen Keller

Dr. Natasha Sriraman is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Eastern Virginia Medical School, researcher, and mother of three. Her main areas of research include breastfeeding, postpartum depression, immigrant health care and health disparities. She has spoken nationally on breastfeeding and postpartum depression and published extensively on these topics. Natasha sits on the Board of Directors of Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine (ABM) and is Chair of the Education Committee. She has previously served as Education Chair for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Section on Breastfeeding and on the Board of Directors of Postpartum Support Virginia and advocates nationally for postpartum depression screening within the pediatric setting. When not working, Natasha enjoys running, yoga, boxing, traveling, and reading. She lives in Virginia with her husband, three kids, and dog.

Find Natasha here:

Instagram: @natasha.mom.MD

85 Comments

  • Great site. A lot of useful info here. I am sending it to a
    few pals ans also sharing in delicious. And naturally, thank you in your effort!

  • I am sure this post has touched all the internet viewers,
    its really really nice paragraph on building up new weblog.

  • You’re so cool! I don’t think I have read through a
    single thing like that before. So great to discover somebody with some genuine thoughts on this
    subject. Seriously.. thank you for starting this up.
    This web site is one thing that is needed on the web, someone with a
    little originality!

  • What’s Taking place i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I have
    discovered It absolutely useful and it has aided me
    out loads. I hope to contribute & help other customers like its aided me.

    Great job.

  • g says:

    Yes! Finally someone writes about g.

  • continuously i used to read smaller articles that also clear
    their motive, and that is also happening with this post which I am reading now.

  • g says:

    You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this topic to be actually something which I think I would never understand.
    It seems too complicated and very broad for me.
    I am looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it!

  • g says:

    Hey there! Quick question that’s entirely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My web site looks weird when browsing from my iphone4.
    I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to fix
    this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share.

    With thanks!

  • my site says:

    I just want to say I am newbie to blogging and site-building and certainly savored your blog site. Probably I’m planning to bookmark your blog post . You amazingly have tremendous posts. Thanks for revealing your website.

  • This is a good tip especially to those fresh to the blogosphere.
    Short but very precise information… Thanks
    for sharing this one. A must read article!

  • Useful info. Fortunate me I found your website by accident, and I’m stunned why this coincidence
    did not took place earlier! I bookmarked it.

  • W88Thai says:

    Simply a smiling visitant here to share the love (:, btw great style and design. “He profits most who serves best.” by Arthur F. Sheldon.

  • Success says:

    Wow! Thank you! I permanently needed to write on my site something like that. Can I include a part of your post to my blog?

  • You could definitely see your enthusiasm in the paintings you write. The sector hopes for more passionate writers such as you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. At all times go after your heart.

  • W88 says:

    Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again very soon!

  • Hello my friend! I want to say that this article is awesome, nice written and include almost all important infos. I’d like to see more posts like this.

  • sishair says:

    I think this website has got some really wonderful info for everyone :D. “I like work it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours.” by Jerome K. Jerome.

  • Thanks for another informative blog. Where else may just I get that kind of information written in such a perfect method? I have a undertaking that I’m simply now running on, and I’ve been at the look out for such information.

  • Excellent site you’ve got here.. It’s difficult to find excellent writing like
    yours these days. I truly appreciate people like you!
    Take care!!

  • I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great. I do not know who you are but certainly you are going to a famous blogger if you aren’t already 😉 Cheers!

  • Photography says:

    Interesting post made here. One thing I would like to say is the fact that most professional domains consider the Bachelors Degree as the entry level requirement for an online degree. Whilst Associate College diplomas are a great way to begin with, completing the Bachelors opens up many entrances to various jobs, there are numerous internet Bachelor Diploma Programs available by institutions like The University of Phoenix, Intercontinental University Online and Kaplan. Another thing is that many brick and mortar institutions make available Online versions of their qualifications but normally for a greatly higher price than the companies that specialize in online diploma plans.

  • Hello, you used to write magnificent, but the last few posts have been kinda boring… I miss your super writings. Past few posts are just a bit out of track! come on!

  • I like what you guys are up also. Such intelligent work and reporting! Carry on the excellent works guys I have incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it will improve the value of my site 🙂

  • Magnificent beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your site, how could i subscribe for a blog web site? The account helped me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided bright clear idea

  • cheats says:

    Nice blog here! Also your website loads up very fast! What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host? I wish my site loaded up as fast as yours lol

  • giving app says:

    Hello, you used to write magnificent, but the last few posts have been kinda boring… I miss your super writings. Past several posts are just a little out of track! come on!

  • I do consider all the ideas you’ve offered on your post. They are really convincing and will certainly work. Nonetheless, the posts are very quick for beginners. May just you please lengthen them a little from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.

  • megapu.sh says:

    After I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a comment is added I get four emails with the identical comment. Is there any way you possibly can remove me from that service? Thanks!

  • Hello there, I found your blog via Google while searching for a related topic, your website came up, it looks great. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

  • #swimsuits says:

    I will immediately grab your rss feed as I can not find your email subscription hyperlink or e-newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Please let me recognise so that I may just subscribe. Thanks.

  • Hey! I simply wish to give a huge thumbs up for the good info you have got here on this post. I will probably be coming again to your weblog for more soon.

  • I used to be suggested this blog by way of my cousin. I am now not positive whether or not this post is written by means of him as nobody else recognise such certain approximately my trouble. You are wonderful! Thanks!

  • curso de seo says:

    I got what you intend, thanks for posting .Woh I am delighted to find this website through google. “Delay is preferable to error.” by Thomas Jefferson.

  • Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all of us you actually know what you’re talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly also visit my site =). We could have a link exchange agreement between us!

  • poker says:

    I am often to running a blog and i actually respect your content. The article has actually peaks my interest. I’m going to bookmark your site and hold checking for brand new information.

  • My spouse and i got absolutely joyful when Jordan managed to deal with his inquiry while using the precious recommendations he received out of your web pages. It’s not at all simplistic to simply be freely giving concepts that many other folks may have been making money from. And we remember we’ve got the blog owner to appreciate because of that. All of the explanations you made, the simple website menu, the friendships you can assist to create – it is all superb, and it is letting our son and us imagine that that theme is interesting, which is certainly extremely vital. Many thanks for all!

  • Thank you for the sensible critique. Me & my neighbor were just preparing to do some research about this. We got a grab a book from our local library but I think I learned more from this post. I’m very glad to see such great info being shared freely out there.

  • Thanks a lot for providing individuals with a very terrific chance to read in detail from here. It really is so awesome and as well , jam-packed with a lot of fun for me personally and my office mates to search your blog at minimum three times per week to study the newest issues you have. Of course, we’re always satisfied with your very good solutions you give. Certain 1 points in this article are indeed the most effective we have all ever had.

  • I just couldn’t leave your site prior to suggesting that I really loved the usual information a person supply on your guests? Is going to be back continuously in order to check up on new posts.

  • A lot of thanks for your entire labor on this blog. Kate really likes working on internet research and it is simple to grasp why. A number of us hear all relating to the powerful way you convey efficient solutions through the blog and in addition invigorate participation from the others on this content plus my girl is always studying so much. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. You have been doing a first class job.

  • Thank you a bunch for sharing this with all of us you really know what you’re talking approximately! Bookmarked. Please also consult with my website =). We could have a hyperlink trade arrangement between us!

  • My brother suggested I might like this blog. He was once entirely right. This publish actually made my day. You can not believe just how a lot time I had spent for this information! Thanks!

  • you’re really a good webmaster. The website loading pace is amazing. It kind of feels that you’re doing any distinctive trick. Furthermore, The contents are masterwork. you’ve done a excellent process in this topic!

  • poker online says:

    Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in reality used to be a leisure account it. Glance complicated to far introduced agreeable from you! However, how can we communicate?

  • There are actually plenty of details like that to take into consideration. That may be a great point to carry up. I supply the ideas above as normal inspiration but clearly there are questions just like the one you convey up the place crucial factor will be working in honest good faith. I don?t know if greatest practices have emerged round issues like that, but I am certain that your job is clearly identified as a good game. Each girls and boys really feel the influence of only a moment’s pleasure, for the remainder of their lives.

  • slimming says:

    certainly like your web site however you have to check the spelling on several of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it very bothersome to tell the reality however I will definitely come again again.

  • m w88 says:

    Hey there! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could get a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having problems finding one? Thanks a lot!

  • CBD vs THC says:

    I do trust all of the concepts you have introduced in your post. They are very convincing and will certainly work. Nonetheless, the posts are very brief for novices. May just you please extend them a bit from subsequent time? Thank you for the post.

  • I’m still learning from you, but I’m improving myself. I absolutely enjoy reading all that is written on your website.Keep the stories coming. I enjoyed it!

  • I just like the valuable info you provide for your articles. I will bookmark your weblog and take a look at again here regularly. I’m reasonably certain I’ll be told lots of new stuff proper right here! Best of luck for the next!

  • This is very interesting, You are a very skilled blogger. I’ve joined your rss feed and look forward to seeking more of your excellent post. Also, I’ve shared your site in my social networks!

  • lån says:

    Someone necessarily assist to make significantly articles I might state. That is the very first time I frequented your website page and thus far? I surprised with the analysis you made to make this actual post amazing. Magnificent process!

  • Hi there! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any problems with hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing months of hard work due to no data backup. Do you have any solutions to stop hackers?

  • I loved as much as you’ll receive carried out right here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish. nonetheless, you command get bought an shakiness over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again since exactly the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase.

  • Wow! This can be one particular of the most helpful blogs We have ever arrive across on this subject. Actually Wonderful. I’m also a specialist in this topic therefore I can understand your effort.

  • Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that it’s really informative. I’m going to watch out for brussels. I will appreciate if you continue this in future. Lots of people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  • Thank you so much for providing individuals with a very terrific chance to read articles and blog posts from here. It is often so superb and as well , packed with amusement for me and my office fellow workers to visit your website particularly 3 times in one week to study the fresh items you will have. And definitely, we are actually amazed with the awesome guidelines you give. Certain 4 areas in this post are basically the most suitable we have all ever had.

  • Mp3 Juice says:

    I will right away snatch your rss feed as I can’t to find your email subscription link or newsletter service. Do you have any? Please allow me recognize in order that I could subscribe. Thanks.

  • Wow! This can be one particular of the most useful blogs We’ve ever arrive across on this subject. Basically Great. I am also a specialist in this topic so I can understand your hard work.

  • Thank you for sharing excellent informations. Your site is very cool. I’m impressed by the details that you’ve on this site. It reveals how nicely you understand this subject. Bookmarked this website page, will come back for more articles. You, my friend, ROCK! I found simply the info I already searched everywhere and just could not come across. What a great website.

  • Troy Koubek says:

    You made some first rate factors there. I appeared on the web for the problem and located most individuals will go together with with your website.

  • Hi there, I discovered your website by way of Google at the same time as looking for a comparable subject, your web site got here up, it seems to be good. I’ve bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

  • What’s Happening i’m new to this, I stumbled upon this I’ve found It absolutely useful and it has aided me out loads. I hope to contribute & aid other users like its helped me. Great job.

  • I want to voice my admiration for your kind-heartedness in support of persons who should have help with this field. Your personal dedication to passing the message around appeared to be incredibly good and have in most cases permitted employees much like me to achieve their objectives. Your own warm and helpful hints and tips denotes a great deal a person like me and much more to my peers. Thanks a ton; from all of us.

  • W88 says:

    I really appreciate this post. I have been looking everywhere for this! Thank goodness I found it on Bing. You’ve made my day! Thanks again!

  • I view something truly interesting about your weblog so I saved to my bookmarks .

  • naturally like your web site but you have to test the spelling on quite a few of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling issues and I find it very troublesome to tell the reality however I’ll surely come again again.

  • Onine Marketing Manager Wien

  • Thank you a bunch for sharing this with all folks you actually recognize what you are speaking approximately! Bookmarked. Please additionally consult with my site =). We may have a hyperlink change agreement between us!

  • You are my inhalation , I have few web logs and very sporadically run out from to post .

  • Wow that was strange. I just wrote an really long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyways, just wanted to say superb blog!

  • I was recommended this blog by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as no one else know such detailed about my problem. You are incredible! Thanks!

  • I truly wanted to compose a simple word in order to say thanks to you for the marvelous solutions you are writing here. My extensive internet look up has finally been paid with good quality ideas to talk about with my close friends. I ‘d claim that many of us visitors are truly blessed to live in a magnificent website with so many perfect people with useful solutions. I feel very lucky to have discovered your entire webpages and look forward to many more thrilling minutes reading here. Thanks once again for a lot of things.

  • alliance says:

    My brother recommended I might like this web site. He was entirely right. This post truly made my day. You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this info! Thanks!

  • Good blog! I really love how it is easy on my eyes and the data are well written. I am wondering how I could be notified when a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your feed which must do the trick! Have a nice day!

  • Thank you for this article. I might also like to mention that it can often be hard if you are in school and merely starting out to initiate a long credit history. There are many scholars who are simply just trying to survive and have a protracted or positive credit history can often be a difficult factor to have.

  • It is indeed my belief that mesothelioma is most dangerous cancer. It’s got unusual qualities. The more I really look at it a lot more I am certain it does not respond like a true solid tissues cancer. If mesothelioma is a rogue virus-like infection, in that case there is the chance for developing a vaccine and also offering vaccination to asbestos exposed people who are vulnerable to high risk regarding developing potential asbestos related malignancies. Thanks for sharing your ideas for this important health issue.

  • There is obviously a lot to know about this. I consider you made certain good points in features also.

  • Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is an extremely well written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post. I will definitely comeback.

  • Just desire to say your article is as astounding. The clarity in your post is simply excellent and i could assume you are an expert on this subject. Fine with your permission let me to grab your RSS feed to keep up to date with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please carry on the gratifying work.

  • cfp new york says:

    My spouse and I stumbled over here coming from a different web address and thought I may as well check things out. I like what I see so now i am following you. Look forward to checking out your web page yet again.

  • Hi, i feel that i noticed you visited my blog so i came to “go back the want”.I am trying to to find issues to enhance my website!I suppose its ok to use some of your concepts!!

  • Have you ever thought about including a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is fundamental and all. But think about if you added some great photos or videos to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and videos, this blog could undeniably be one of the best in its field. Superb blog!

  • You are a very bright person!

  • Thanks so much for giving everyone a very pleasant possiblity to discover important secrets from here. It’s always so pleasurable and packed with fun for me personally and my office colleagues to search your website not less than three times in one week to see the fresh issues you have. Of course, I’m also at all times fascinated for the extraordinary secrets you give. Selected 4 areas in this posting are essentially the simplest we have had.

Leave a Reply