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Journal of Korean Academy of Women's Health Nursing 1999;5(3):265-276.
Sexual Discrimination towards Female Nurses in the Male Dominated Hospital Environment
Goh, H Y , Jeong, G H
1College of Nursing, Keimyung University, Korea.
2Department of Nursing Science, Hallym University, Korea.
Abstract
Female nurses in Korea have historically experienced discrimination on the basis of their gender as part of the traditional society views on woman and as a result of the male dominated hospital environments. This discrimination may interfere with the ability of female nurses to promote the health of their patients. To better understand this bias, we collected and analyzed 16 cases of alleged sexual discrimination reported by female nurses with more than 5 years work experience. The cases were classified into 10 subjects and further into 4 categories: personnel administration, daily working environment, female gender bias, and health care delivery. There were 7 cases (11.3%) of unjust personnel changes consisting of demotion(1), termination(4), and reallocation of position(3). Twenty three (37.1%) of cases related to problems in the daily workplace including biases in communication between female nurses and male physicians(12), daily work(8), and responsibility for adverse outcomes(3). We noted 17 cases (27.4%) of female gender bias as reported by female nurses(7), female physicians(7), and female patients(3). Lastly, there were 15 (24.3%) cases of problems with health care delivery due to sexual discrimination, including enrollment in the health care system(4),and decisions regarding medical care(4). These results suggest that sexual discrimination towards women is pervasive in the Korea hospitals, not only towards female nurses but also towards female physicians and patients. More discriminatory practices in a timely fashion such that better nursing care can be provided to patients and their families.
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