The Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery (SNIS), a scientific and educational association with more than 1,000 members dedicated to advancing the specialty of neurointerventional surgery, has made a statement in support of pregnancy and parental leave policies for those in the field who are birthing or non-birthing parents including those who adopt, foster, and the like.
SNIS believes that these individuals should not be penalized in any way, and that legal and regulatory mandates and family friendly workplace policies should be considered when institutions and individual practitioners approach the issue of childbearing in the context of a career in neurointerventional surgery.
Neurointerventionalist and SNIS member Amanda Baker, MD, led a structured literature review with her peers regarding parental leave policies in neurointerventional surgery and related arenas. This involved evaluating a 2019 survey of those in the field, which included proposed changes to reduce barriers for women and parents pursuing family life, as well as addressing concerns regarding radiation exposure.
“SNIS believes people shouldn’t have to choose between a fulfilling family life or professional career, especially when the nature and urgency of neurointerventional treatments require emotional, physical, and mental demands on every person at each experience level,” said J Mocco, MD, MS, SNIS President and the Kalmon D. Post Professor of Neurosurgery at the Icahn School of Medicine and Director of the Cerebrovascular Center at Mount Sinai.
“Things like allowing flexibility for scheduling prenatal appointments, to not penalizing those who use family leave, are vital and will have lifelong benefits to those in neurointerventional surgery and their families. We want our practitioners to know that we do not believe taking time for family needs is a lack of commitment to the profession.”
“We are grateful to the leadership of SNIS and the Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery (JNIS) for supporting all people—all families—in this amazing field,” said Dr. Baker. “I would like to personally thank University of California, San Francisco’s Neuroendovascular Surgery program for training me as their second female and first pregnant neurointerventionalist.”
The statement was developed by SNIS’s Women in Neurointervention Committee, the Standards and Guidelines Committee, and the SNIS Board of Directors. Other recommendations from SNIS include making the use of vacation time flexible for those undergoing family planning methods or procedures, particularly within training programs. They also believe Fellowship training, career promotion, and job security should be maintained during the process of starting a family.
Amanda Baker et al, Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery: position statement on pregnancy and parental leave for physicians practicing neurointerventional surgery, Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery (2022). DOI: 10.1136/jnis-2022-019613
Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery
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