An Exploration of Myths, Barriers and Strategies for Improving Diversity Among STS Members. The Annals of thoracic surgery Backhus, L. M., Kpodonu, J. n., Romano, J. C., Pelletier, G. n., Preventza, O. n., Cooke, D. T. 2019


Diversity within health care organizations has many proven benefits, yet women and other groups remain under-represented in cardiothoracic surgery. We sought to explore responses from a Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) survey to identify myths and barriers for informing organizational strategies in the STS and cardiothoracic surgery. We performed a qualitative review of narrative survey responses within three domains surrounding diversity in cardiothoracic surgery: Myths, Barriers, and Strategies for improvement. Common diversity myths included: diversity as a pipeline problem (24%), diversity equated to exclusivity (21%), and diversity not supporting meritocracy (18%). The most frequent barrier code was perceived prejudice (22%). Suggested strategies towards improvement were: culture change prioritizing diversity (22%) and training the leaders (14%). Notably, 15% of response codes reflected the belief that disparities do not exist thus the issue should not be prioritized by the organization. The results do not necessarily reflect the beliefs of the majority of STS membership, nonetheless they provide important insight critical to guide any efforts towards eliminating disparities within cardiothoracic surgery and improving the care of our patients.

View details for DOI 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2019.09.007

View details for PubMedID 31593654