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EDITIONS
BMA Conference Wednesday, 3 July, 2002, 16:58 GMT 17:58 UK
Women 'dominating medical schools'
Medical students
Male students - endangered species?
Too few men are training to become doctors, the British Medical Association's annual meeting was told on Wednesday.

For the first time ever, more women than men graduated from medical schools.

Six out of ten present students are women, according to figures, and some are worried that medicine may become overly-dominated by women in the future.

Members of the BMA voted in favour of a motion calling on the government to look at ways to encourage more male students into medical school.

James Coulston, from the association's Medical Schools Committee, said that the disparity was the "next big problem" for the profession.

Good prospects

He said that women were proving far more attractive candidates - both physically and because their "A" level grades were better.

Stephen Sanders, another committee member, told the conference that at his school in Nottingham there were two women to every man.

"It is not that we have a problem with women being doctors - they are fantastic doctors - as are me - the issue is about not discriminating against men.

He said that just as it had been wrong in the past when the profession was male-dominated, it was equally wrong that the pendulum should swing too far the other way.

Dr Michael Crowe, a GP from Leicester, said that there had been eight men to every woman during his time at medical school, but now the balance had shifted too much.

"There is a major problem brewing and it needs correcting."

He said that the demand for flexible working arrangements as women doctors started families would hit the NHS harder than previously if a higher proportion of doctors were women.

Full coverage of the BMA conference 2002

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See also:

02 Jul 02 | BMA Conference
02 Jul 02 | BMA Conference
01 Jul 02 | BMA Conference
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