Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Head To Head

Are there too many female medical graduates? No

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 03 April 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:749

Rapid Response:

Are there too many female Drs?

Having read an article in the BMJ (dated 5/4/8) on the feminisation of the medical profession, I must take issue with one of Dr McKinstry's comments.

He wrote 'empathy and communication skills are important but so are efficiency and the ability to live with risk.' Is he implying that female Drs, are, by-and-large, inefficient and unable to live with risk ?

Instead of presenting a sensible and cogent argument for balancing up the medical profession he has come across as arrogant and out-of-touch with the reality of day-to-day general practice. He is mistaken in his belief that a female Dr who consults more slowly than another Dr, male or female, sees fewer patients. She (or indeed he) actually has a shorter tea- break/lunch-break/administration time.

Competing interests: None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

07 April 2008
Helen J Miller
Full-time GP Partner
Tain and District Medical Group, Scotsburn Road,Tain,IV19 1PR