Consider this post one of innumerable on women in the medical field.
The MD-RN dynamic is old saw (sidebar–the no. 1 problem with RN retention at my health system is “I need to move to find a man.” Take heed undergrads, the be-a-nurse-marry-a-doctor plan is not working out). As health systems move toward the team model of care we nursing pups are told that the doc is not your boss. Administratively speaking this is true. In practice getting chewed out by a doc is one of a new grad’s greatest fears. The power differential is entrenched.
One of my classmates brought up a super prescient question this past semester while we had the ear of an old school doc who battled it out in the 1960s as the only female member of her med school class. What is going to happen to MD-RN relationships now that near 50% of med school grads are women? The doc sidestepped the question (which was, of course, a landmine), but did share a thought worth repeating: in the US, as the prestige of being a doctor declines the number of women entering the profession increases. This isn’t coincidence. Either as prestige drops more women are viewing medicine as something that they are capable of OR as more women become doctors the stock price on an MD drops (see teachers, secretaries). To both of those possibilities I give a big eye roll-y OH BROTHER.