Indexed on: 20 Dec '18Published on: 20 Dec '18Published in: Journal of veterinary medical education
Wellness and work-life balance are prominent concerns in the veterinary profession and data suggest that personal relationship-building with peers and family assist veterinary trainees and veterinarians with wellness. The demographics of veterinary medical trainees (students, interns, and residents) have shifted to a female-dominated cohort and veterinary training overlaps with peak reproductive age for the majority of trainees. Despite a robust body of literature in the human medical profession surrounding pregnancy, parenting, and family planning (PPFP) among human medical students, interns, and residents, no comparable data exist within the United States veterinary medical community. This study reviewed policies and support services in place to support PPFP at accredited United States veterinary medical training institutions through the use of an online administrator survey and the review of handbooks and relevant written material. Results from this study highlight a lack of consistency across veterinary medical training institutions for policy and support services for PPFP for trainees, especially related to lactation support and parental leave. Our data can help facilitate the development of standards or best practices for policies and support services that support PPFP among veterinary medical trainees, and opens the dialogue to consider the unique needs of our shifted trainee demographics.