Liebe HL, Buonpane C, Lewis S, Golubkova A, Leiva T, Phillips R, Stewart K, Reinschmidt KM, Garwe T, Sarwar Z, Hunter CJ
Background: Despite the importance of social justice advocacy, surgeon attitudes toward individual involvement vary. We hypothesized that the majority of surgeons in this study, regardless of gender or training level, believe that surgeons should be involved in social justice movements.Methods: A survey was distributed to surgical faculty and trainees at three academic tertiary care centers. Participation was anonymous with 123 respondents. Chi-square and Fisher's exact test were used for analysis with significance accepted when p < 0.05. Thematic analysis was performed on free responses.Results: The response rate was 46%. Compared to men, women were more likely to state that surgeons should be involved (86% vs 64%, p = 0.01) and were personally involved in social justice advocacy (86% vs 51%, p = 0.0002). Social justice issues reported as most important to surgeons differed significantly by gender (p = 0.008). Generated themes for why certain types of advocacy involvement were inappropriate were personal choices, professionalism and relationships.Conclusions: Social justice advocacy is important to most surgeons in this study, especially women. This emphasizes the need to incorporate advocacy into surgical practice.