In reply to “Because it’s 2018: Women in Canadian Anesthesiology”
To the Editor,
We wish to thank Dr. Mottiar for her well-considered and well-researched commentary on the historical gender imbalance among the Honour Awardees of the Canadian Anesthesiologists’ Society (CAS).1 Her concern is shared by many CAS members, including all of the CAS Executive committee.
The CAS Honour Awards recognize excellence in various categories of achievement. Nominations for these awards may be submitted by active members of CAS. Throughout the year, nominations are solicited on the CAS website (www.cas.ca), in the quarterly CAS Anesthesia News, and in e-mail notices sent to CAS members.
We concur with Dr. Mottiar’s statement that the 2018 CAS Honour Award recipients “are all extremely deserving of recognition and they all have a clear history of impressive accomplishments”. Importantly, CAS members of both genders were supportive of the 2018 Honour Award winners and have been effusive in their congratulations.
Dr. Mottiar postulates two reasons for the “lack of proportional representation in award winners”. She states, “women are either not being nominated, or they are being nominated and are not being selected as award recipients”.1 In response, we can confirm that her first hypothesis is nearly accurate: there are very few nominations of women from year to year. The second is not, as seen in 2017, when two of six winners were women.
We clearly need more Honour Award nominations of female anesthesiologists. Dr. Mottiar makes a constructive and compelling case that all of us in anesthesiology need to make a “conscious effort” to ensure that the gender shift in our anesthesiology profession is reflected appropriately in award recognition as well as in positions of leadership. The CAS Executive committee agrees and joins with her in encouraging our members to nominate more of the many accomplished women working in anesthesiology in Canada.
Conflicts of interest
This submission was handled by Dr. Hilary P. Grocott, Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Journal of Anesthesia.
- 1.Mottiar M. Because it’s 2018: Women in Canadian Anesthesiology. Can J Anesth 2018; 65: DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12630-018-1126-y.