Virtual interviews and equity: The pediatric pulmonary fellow perspective.

Publication date: Mar 28, 2024

The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic shifted medical training programs to utilize virtual interviews (VIs) starting with the 2020 interview cycle. Fellowship interviews continue in the virtual format. It is unknown how this shift has affected equity for applicants as compared to in-person interviews. Equity in this study includes consideration of the opportunity for an applicant to accept, access, and conduct a VI. This study assessed pediatric pulmonary fellows’ perception of equity associated with VIs and preferences for future cycles. An anonymous survey link was emailed to Pediatric Pulmonology Program Directors to disseminate to incoming and first-year pediatric pulmonary fellows who participated in the 2022-2023 and 2021-2022 VI seasons. Responses were summarized by frequency and percentages. Inductive coding was used to thematically analyze free-text responses. Nearly 30% of eligible incoming and first-year pulmonary fellows (nā€‰=ā€‰35/119, 29. 4%) completed the survey. Seventy-four percent felt that VIs reduce inequities as compared to in-person interviews. Sixty percent felt that VIs were the most equitable format, and 51% chose a VI as their preferred future format. Important practice considerations to promote equity for future VIs included providing applicants with instruction for the expected dress code, followed by providing applicants with virtual technology (91% and 89% of respondents ranked as at least “somewhat important,” respectively). VIs were perceived as a more equitable interview format by pediatric pulmonology fellows compared to in-person interviews in our study. To increase equity for VIs, program directors can consider additional adaptations such as providing standardized instruction for dress code and providing the required technology.

Concepts Keywords
Free diversity
Interviews equity
Pandemic fellowship
Pediatric implicit bias
virtual interviews


Type Source Name
disease VO Equity
disease VO frequency

Original Article

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