Congratulations to Portland Surgical President (and FSIE innovations team member) Dr. Valerie Halpin and the committee for creating another outstanding program for the annual Portland Surgical Scientific Session held at Good Samaritan Hospital. This year marks the first time in history that all four society executives were women surgeons since the society's inception in 1948. While appreciating this nod toward gender equality, we were reminded that as a surgical community, we may still have work to do. Dr Heather Hoops and colleagues from OHSU presented their findings demonstrating gender-based differences in surgical resident training. Their study showed that mid-level male trainees were given more autonomy than their female counterparts despite similar objective technical aptitude. This difference disappeared by their chief years. This timely and thought provoking work lead to a discussion of potential etiologies. Are gender-based "differences" necessarily discriminatory on the part of the instructors? Or perhaps they reveal gender-based differences in learning styles and/or perceptions of confidence (possibly over confidence) that impact the instructors willingness to let go of the reigns. This type of work and discussion signifies an inspiring willingness to investigate important issues citywide among Portland surgeons. During the conference, the society also tackled quality and performance improvement issues in a lecture by invited guest professor Dr Vance Sohn. His lecture was flanked by a multitude of scientific presentations highlighting the important work done by surgical investigators throughout the city. Here are the FSIE highlights:
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