Work life balance and job flexibility is not gender specific

06 June 2013
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Press Statement – release 06/06/2013

Work life balance and job flexibility is not gender specific

Response to: Statement by Anne McIntosh, MP “…tremendous burden training what effectively might be two GPs working part-time where they are ladies.” Supported by Health Minister Anna Soubry.  

The Medical Women’s Federation (MWF) has supported innovative job practices such as job sharing, flexible hours and better workforce planning, Making Part-Time Work report published in 2008 (1). We at the MWF support our women doctors through all stages of their careers. We have advocated that facilitating part-time training at critical stages of a woman’s career is a real necessity, together with robust return to practice guidelines and support.

Research has shown that the desire for work-life balance is not gender specific and job flexibility is a key factor in retaining doctors. Allowing flexibility of work practices at key stages in career cycles is crucial in order to keep all doctors in practice and retain the workforce (2,3).

Curing the shortage of doctors is both a function of creating new doctors and identifying ways to retain those currently practicing, even if it means changing their role.

Medicine is a career that requires an enormous amount of time, energy and effort and provides its just rewards.


1. Making Part-time work report, Medical Women's Federation (2008)

2. Baker M., Flett A. , Williams J. The work commitments of British general practitioners: a national survey. Br J Gen Pract. 2000 September; 50(458): 730–731

3. Allen I. Challenges to the health services: the professions. BMJ. 2000 June 3; 320(7248): 1533–1535.

Medical Women's Federation
Tavistock House North,
Tavistock Square, London,
Tel: 020 7387 7765

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