Gender Inequities in Transfusion Medicine Society Recognition Awards

Jeremy W. Jacobs, Brian D. Adkins, Laura D. Stephens, Jennifer S. Woo, Garrett S. Booth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Award recognition by medical societies contributes to professional development, career networking, and academic rank promotion. Previous research has demonstrated that men are the predominant recipients of medical society awards across multiple medical specialties; as such, we sought to understand whether women are underrepresented as award recipients amongst blood banking and transfusion medicine (BBTM) medical societies. We examined recipients of 10 total awards from the Association for the Advancement of Blood and Biotherapies (AABB) and the American Society for Apheresis. Additional evaluation of AABB's National Blood Foundation Hall of Fame inductees was conducted. Gender was determined via online review of pronouns, online photographs, and a web-based gender identification application. Award recipient gender was analyzed and coded independently by two authors, and any discrepancies were adjudicated by author consensus. Of the 330 AABB awards since 1954, significantly more have been conferred to men (81.5%, 269/330; P < .001). Of the 51 American Society for Apheresis awards presented since 1993, 64.7% (33/51; P = .23) have been conferred to men. Compared to the first 10 years of the AABB awards (1954-1964), there has been a significant increase in the proportion of women award recipients in the most recent decade (2010-2021) (18.5%, 5/27 vs 29.4%, 30/102; P < .001). However, additional temporal analysis of the modern era (2000-2021) revealed men have received significantly more AABB awards than women (77.4%, 144/186 vs 22.6%, 42/186; P < .001). Our findings highlight both historic and contemporary inequity for recognition of women within BBTM. Without improvement, gender parity among BBTM award recipients will take approximately 120 years (11% increase in women awardees in 60 years); thus, to ensure the BBTM field continues to progress, we must advocate for equity among all members, including but not limited to gender, race, and ethnicity. Strategies to enhance equity include transparency in the identities of award nominees, award recipients, and individuals on selection committees, the gender ratios of both award nominees and recipients, and implementation of methods for tracking individual demographics over time. These strategies would permit temporal analysis of the ratio of award nominee gender to award recipient gender, and assessment as to whether potential gender inequities improve over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalTransfusion Medicine Reviews
StateAccepted/In press - 2022


  • Blood bank
  • Diversity
  • Gender equity
  • Inclusion
  • Recognition awards
  • Transfusion medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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