One day, I was examining an eight-year-old boy. As I entered the exam room and introduced myself, he said, “I didn’t know that doctors could be men.”
Apparently, in all the years that he had coming to our practice, he had only seen the women “providers.” He wasn’t aware of how things had changed so much during my career.
Fifty years ago when I started medical school, my class of 80 students included 16 women (20%) which at that time was higher than the national average. When I finished my pediatric residency in 1978, my specialty was still dominated by men. Over the years, as more women went into medicine, pediatrics became a specialty which attracted many more women than men.
Now when I go to a pediatrics conference, I am surrounded by mostly women. The majority of the men are typically old timers like me.