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A recent British Junior Cardiologists Association survey demonstrated gender disparity in procedure-based subspecialties within cardiology in the UK.1 Women form between 4.5% and 7.5% of the interventional cardiology (IC) workforce worldwide2 3 and even fewer in electrophysiology (EP): only 6% of female UK cardiology trainees choose EP.1 Interestingly, female trainees were more likely than males to change their preferred subspecialty during early training, away from intervention and EP, in favour of imaging, heart failure and adult congenital heart disease.4 Common elements identified in feedback from potential female cardiology trainees are the shortage of visible female role models and mentors, and concerns about work-life balance.4 5
In this article, four female cardiologists, who are leaders in their chosen procedure-based specialties, discuss their journeys and give advice to all trainees who may be considering an interventional subspecialty. They were each interviewed by trainees from their chosen subspecialty.
Dr Rasha Al-Lamee is one of the few female academic interventional cardiologists (IC), and works at Imperial College, London. She completed most of her cardiology training in London, finishing with an interventional fellowship in Milan, Italy, and then a PhD at Imperial College. Rasha combines being a mother, with a fulltime interventional cardiology practice, in addition to a fulfilling academic career.
Dr Shazia Hussain is an IC at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester. In addition to cardiology training at Papworth Hospital, she completed a PhD from King’s College London and was awarded the competitive British Cardiovascular Intervention Society Interventional Fellowship in Toronto.
Dr Margaret McEntegart is an IC at the Golden Jubilee National Hospital in Glasgow and Honorary Associate Professor of Cardiology at the University of Glasgow. She completed much of her training in Scotland, finishing with an Interventional Fellowship at Columbia University Medical Centre, New York. Margaret is a globally …
Twitter @ShrillaB, @irumdiamond
Collaborators Rasha Al-Lamee, Shazia Hussain, Ashley Nisbet, Margaret McEntagert.
Contributors SB devised the paper and questionnaire and, chose the subjects. NB, PH, HH and IDK each interviewed one of the four featured cardiologists. Dr Al-Lamee, Dr Hussain, Dr McEntagert and Dr Nisbet provided their time for interview and comments on the final draft. SB wrote the final paper, incorporating comments from all the authors and collaborators.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient and public involvement Patients and/or the public were not involved in the design, or conduct, or reporting, or dissemination plans of this research.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.