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Analysis of H-index in Assessing Gender Differences in Academic Rank and Leadership in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in the United States and Canada

Yang, Hsin Yun, MSc; Rhee, Gaeun, BHSc; Xuan, Lisa, BSc; Silver, Julie K., MD; Jalal, Sabeena, MD; Khosa, Faisal, MD, MBA, FFRRCSI, FRCPC

American Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation: June 2019 - Volume 98 - Issue 6 - p 479–483
doi: 10.1097/PHM.0000000000001129
Original Research Articles

Objectives The aims of the study were (1) to establish potential gender differences in academic physical medicine and rehabilitation faculty across the United States and Canada and (2) to evaluate associations between physician gender, leadership position, and research productivity.

Design Physical medicine and rehabilitation programs enlisted in Fellowship and Residency Electronic Interactive Database (n = 72) and Canadian Resident Matching Service (n = 9) were searched for academic faculty with Doctor of Medicine degrees to generate a database of gender and academic profiles. Bibliometric data were collected using Elsevier's Scopus and analyzed by Strata v14.2.

Results Of 1045 faculty meeting the inclusion criteria, 653 were men and 392 were women. Men were found in greater numbers across all academic ranks, with professors as most conspicuous (79.14%), and held most (85.54%) leadership positions. The study's prediction model assessed for gender differences in academic rank and leadership roles and found that odds of men having higher h-index as 0.78 (95% confidence interval = 0.24–0.87), indicating that women were not significantly inferior in academic performance.

Conclusions A significantly greater number of men make up physical medicine and rehabilitation faculty in all academic ranks and leadership positions. H-index based on gender and adjusted for covariates is comparable between men and women, suggesting that more complex, multifactorial issues are likely influencing the gender differences.

From the Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (HYY, GR, LX); Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts (JKS); Massachusetts General Hospital, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (JKS); and Department of Radiology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver General Hospital, Victoria, British of Columbia, Canada (SJ, FK).

All correspondence should be addressed to: Faisal Khosa, MD, MBA, FFRRCSI, FRCPC, Department of Radiology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver General Hospital, 899 12th Ave W, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada V5Z 1M9.

A summarized poster presentation of this study was performed during the 2017 Federation of Medical Women of Canada (FMWC) Conference at Sheraton Ottawa Hotel on September 17, 2017 and the 6th Annual Action Global Health Network Conference at University of Ottawa on September 30, 2017.

FK is the recipient of the Canadian Association of Radiologists/Canadian Radiological Foundation Leadership Scholarship (2017) and Vancouver Coastal Health Leadership Award.

Hsin Yun Yang, Gaeun Rhee, and Lisa Xuan are in training.

Financial disclosure statements have been obtained, and no conflicts of interest have been reported by the authors or by any individuals in control of the content of this article.

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