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Gender Gap Exists in Domestic Duties of Working Physicians

Unlike female physicians, most men's spouses or domestic partners were not employed full-time

FRIDAY, March 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Gender differences exist in domestic activities among career-oriented academic physicians with children, according to a study published online March 3 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Shruti Jolly, M.D., from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues sent a nationwide postal survey (2010 to 2011) to physician recipients of National Institutes of Health K08 or K23 awards (2006 to 2009) with active academic affiliation at the time of the survey.

Based on 1,049 responses, the researchers found that women were more likely than men to have spouses or domestic partners who were employed full-time (85.6 versus 44.9 percent). After adjustment for work hours, spousal employment, and other factors, women respondents who were married or partnered with children spent 8.5 more hours per week on domestic activities. When looking at a subgroup of these respondents with spouses or domestic partners who were employed full-time, women were more likely to take time off than men (42.6 versus 12.4 percent) during disruptions of usual child care arrangements.

"In this sample of career-oriented professionals, gender differences in domestic activities existed among those with children," the authors write.

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