Women's Health Curricula in Internal Medicine Residency Programs: A Scoping Review

Christiana M. Zhang, Emily Insetta, Christine Caufield-Noll, Rachel B. Levine

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: Despite national efforts to expand women's health education, internal medicine (IM) residents remain unprepared to provide comprehensive care to women. The objectives of this scoping review are to provide an overview of published women's health curricula in IM residency programs and to identify potential areas for improvement. Materials and Methods: Studies were identified using PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, Scopus, Education Resources Information Center (ERIC), Web of Science, and MedEdPORTAL. Inclusion criteria included the following: (1) women's health as defined by the authors (2) description of a curriculum (3) designed for IM residents (4) based in North America, and (5) published between 1998 and 2018. Data abstracted included content, educational and assessment methods, and quality. Descriptive analysis was used to compare data. Results: Sixteen articles met the inclusion criteria. The most common women's health topics were intimate partner violence (31%) and menopause (31%). Twelve curricula (75%) were implemented in the outpatient setting. Of the teaching methods, didactics (69%) and in-clinic teaching (44%) were most commonly used. All studies that assessed attitudes, knowledge, and/or behavior showed an improvement post-intervention. No studies evaluated patient outcomes. Conclusion: To our knowledge, this is the first review summarizing published women's health curricula in IM residency. There were a limited number of published articles describing women's health curricula. Although content varied, the curricula were effective in improving attitudes, knowledge, and/or behavior with regard to women's health topics. We encourage IM residency programs to develop and disseminate women's health curricula to inform future improvements and advancements in women's health education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1768-1779
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Women's Health
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2019


  • curriculum
  • internal medicine residency
  • women's health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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