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Mistreatment a common experience for LGBTQ+ surgery residents; increased suicidality an effect

59.2% of LGBTQ+ respondents reported experiencing discrimination, versus 42.3% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents. Due to this, more frequently consider leaving their program and suicide.

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How do rates of self-reported mistreatment and sources of mistreatment vary between lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and other sexual and gender minority (LGBTQ+) general surgery residents and their non-LGBTQ+ peers?

A study is claiming that mistreatment (i.e. discrimination, harassment, and bullying) is a common experience for LGBTQ+ surgery residents, with attending surgeons being the most common overall source. Increased suicidality among LGBTQ+ surgery residents is associated with this mistreatment.

The study – “Experiences of LGBTQ+ Residents in US General Surgery Training Programs” by Evan A. Heiderscheit, Cary Jo R. Schlick, Ryan J. Ellis, et al – appeared in JAMA Surgery.

This study that involved 6,381 surgical residents specifically found:

  • 59.2% of LGBTQ+ respondents reported experiencing discrimination, versus 42.3% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents
  • 47.5% experienced sexual harassment, versus 29.3% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents
  • 74.8% experienced bullying, versus 66.9% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents

While LGBTQ+ residents reported similar perceptions of the learning environment, career satisfaction, and burnout , they still have more frequent considerations of leaving their program and suicide.

For the researchers, “multifaceted interventions are necessary to develop safer and more inclusive learning environments.


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