September 2005 MedBytes: Women in Medicine

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September is Women in Medicine Month. This month's feature story examines the growing number and influence of women physicians in the field. Below is a sample of sites on the World Wide Web that provide additional information.

Changing the Face of Medicine
Changing the Face of Medicine is an exhibition that honors the lives and achievements of women in medicine. Over the last 150 years, thousands of women have pursued a medical degree, practiced medicine, conducted research, and lived full and rich lives. Their stories and their careers inspire each succeeding generation of women as they open doors, make new discoveries, and change the face of medicine.

The exhibition's site,  www.nlm.nih.gov/changingthefaceofmedicine , provides exhibition information, allows visitors to perform their own customized database search to learn about the women physicians featured in the exhibition, and provides online interactive activities that use games and learning modules to bring issues of science and medicine to life. Visitors may also post their own stories about women physicians who they believe should be part of the project and read stories that others have submitted.

MomMD ®  
MomMD ®www.mommd.com , is an association and online magazine for allopathic and osteopathic women in medicine. The MomMD community provides resources and information for women physicians, residents, medical students, and premed students. The site links to more than 7,000 pages of articles and discussion forum posts on everything from becoming a physician to starting a medical practice to having a child. Members range in age from 12 to 65, and many (around 80 percent) have children. Members receive regular e-mail articles, newsletters and updates, access to professional and educational services, and personal support.

The Women's Health Site
The Women's Health Site, www.thewomenshealthsite.org , an online resource of Duke University Medical Center, features health care professional-oriented information on new developments in women's health care. It is linked from some premium women's health sites such as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the National Coalition for Women With Heart Disease, the Epilepsy Foundation, and Imaginis.

The site offers free (with registration) access to a growing collection of presentations used in continuing education activities for physicians and other health professionals. All downloadable presentations are in Microsoft PowerPoint format.

Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine
The Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine was founded in 1998 to protect and preserve the history of women in medicine and science. To carry out its mission, the foundation provides funding to archives and organizations that promote and preserve the history of women in medicine; provides educational programs through exhibits loaned to schools, organizations, and institutions; and each year honors an outstanding woman in medicine with the Alma Dea Morani, MD, Renaissance Woman Award.

Currently the foundation,  www.fhwim.org , has turned its attention to developing alliances with like-minded organizations. While the foundation will continue to fund projects for the archives and special collections, it has extended its support outside of this single institution.

American Medical Women's Association
Founded in 1915 by Bertha VanHoosen, MD, the American Medical Women's Association (AMWA) is an organization of 10,000 women physicians and medical students dedicated to serving as the unique voice for women's health and the advancement of women in medicine. AMWA's current priority issues include access to health care, reproductive rights, tobacco cessation, and violence against women.

Online AMWA,  www.amwa-doc.org , provides networking and mentoring opportunities, medical education, and career development resources. There is a link to theWoman to Woman mentoring program, which is Web-based e-mentoring for students and residents to get advice they need 24/7 from experienced women physicians. Also, the site offers information about the organization's series of educational projects .

Site visitors may also access articles from the Journal of the American Medical Women's Association (JAMWA) which was the only peer-reviewed medical journal to focus solely on women's health issues. AMWA's eight-page bimonthly newsletter, AMWA Connections , can also be accessed online.

MedBytes is a quick look at new, or newly discovered, Web sites of interest to   Texas physicians. The column also highlights features of the TMA Web site. If you know of some interesting medical sites or have questions about how to use the TMA Web site, e-mail erin.prather@texmed.org . Publication of information about Web sites in this column is not to be considered an endorsement or approval by the   Texas Medical Association of the sites or sponsors, or of any products or services involved.

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