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Survey shows 30 percent of female doctors face harassment

Maryland patients may be interested to learn that harassment and sexual discrimination is common in both medicine and science. A study that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that approximately 30 percent of professional female doctors reported that they have been sexually harassed. In comparison, 4 percent of male doctors reported being victims of such behavior.

For the study, more than 1,000 men and women were surveyed. These particular participants had received a career development award from the National Institutes of Health. The survey covered their experiences with inappropriate or unwanted sexual advances, bribes for sexual acts, threats and general gender bias.

Of the 30 percent who had experienced gender bias and harassment, 60 percent reported that the bias and harassment had a negative effect on their confidence as professionals. Approximately 50 percent also stated that these experiences had a negative impact on their ability to advance in their career. The results of the survey show that there is still a long way to go in order to fully eliminate inappropriate behavior in the workplace.

Sexual harassment in any industry can prevent people from being able to do their job well and potentially from advancing in their chosen career. Most companies have employee manuals that contain provisions about how incidents of perceived harassment should be reported and to whom. However, many victims find that their complaints are ignored and, in some cases, they are retaliated against in some fashion. Those who find themselves in this position may want to meet with an employment law attorney and determine how to proceed.

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