Design, Implementation, and Evaluation of a Diversity Program for Radiology.


Department of Radiology and Radiological Sciences, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee. Electronic address: [Email]


OBJECTIVE : Diagnostic radiology training programs are less diverse than graduating US medical school classes and the patient populations they serve. Inclusion of physicians who are underrepresented minorities in medicine (URMM) can strengthen the profession and help to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse population. Our Department of Radiology developed and implemented a plan to increase the number of URMMs in our residency applicant pool and residency training program.
METHODS : We designed a recruitment strategy to diversify the radiology residency applicant pool. This included website development, advertising, early exposure opportunities, travel to predominantly minority institutions and national meetings, and mentoring URMM medical students. We implemented parallel activities to increase the number of URMMs in our residency program. These included holistic screening tools for residency application review, a diverse residency recruitment committee, a welcome environment for visiting candidates, and "Second Look Weekend" visits for talented candidates. Primary outcomes measured include change in percentages of URMM applicants in our applicant pool and URMM residents in our residency program.
RESULTS : The percentage of URMM radiology residency applicants increased from 7.5% (42 of 556) of the total applicant pool in the 2012 to 2013 recruitment year to 12.6% (98 of 777) in the 2017 to 2018 recruitment year (P = .001). URMM radiology residency representation increased from 0% (0 of 32) in the 2013 to 2014 academic year to 20% (6 of 30) in the 2018 to 2019 academic year (P = .01).
CONCLUSIONS : An intentional, strategic diversity program can diversify an institution's residency applicant pool and increase representation of URMMs in a diagnostic radiology residency program.


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