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AANA and Ruth Jackson Orthopedic Society Address Diversity in Orthopedics at Joint Event

April 13, 2022

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The Arthroscopy Association of North America and the Ruth Jackson Orthopedic Society hosted a joint event to address important and timely topics related to the longstanding gender disparity in orthopedics, according to a press release.

Held on specialty day at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the diversity session included presentations on implicit bias and impostor syndrome, as well as a panel discussion on shifting the needle in diversity and orthopedics, according to the release. The statement also noted that the program for the event included a lecture recognizing the accomplishments of Freddie H. Fu, MD, DSc (Hon), DPs (Hon), an orthopedic visionary, diversity advocate and founding member of the International Orthopedic Diversity Alliance, passed away September 2021.

“The vision for Specialty Day 2022 was unlike any educational event held in years past,” Mark H. Getelman, MD, president of AANA, said in the statement. “Improving diversity and inclusion within our society has been a cornerstone of my presidential year, and this particular program has taken a giant step in that direction. Recognizing our colleague, Dr. Fu, who fiercely championing diversity within orthopedics and revolutionizing the way we care for all of our patients, was special and a natural and fitting addition.

In addition to joint-specific sessions on the shoulder, knee and hip, the release noted that discussions within these sessions incorporated several takeaways on caring for female athletes, supporting the program’s diverse and inclusive theme. . The program also included Martha Murray, MD, FAAOS, chief orthopedic surgeon at Boston Children’s Hospital and professor of orthopedic surgery at Harvard Medical School, who presented the annual innovations lecture. Additionally, the program has gained national attention as part of #SpeakUpOrtho, an initiative to raise awareness of gender bias, inequality and harassment in orthopedic surgery.

“Our goal from the beginning of the creation of this program was to highlight the glaring discrepancies and how we, as an orthopedic community, can address these discrepancies head on,” Brian R. Waterman, MD, program co-chair, said in the statement. “Adding an entire session dedicated to diversity and recognizing the invaluable contributions of our female colleagues was just the start.”