Wage Gap In Healthcare and Optometry

Dr. Rachel Simpson, co-host of the podcast Lunch Date with Rachel and Kate, discusses the gender wage gap in optometry in this video interview.

Wage gaps at the high level, are the differences between what two groups of individuals are paid. Generally, gender wage gaps are discussed in the binary, looking at men and women. When it comes to understanding wage gaps, it is important to look at all associated factors and consider some important questions like:

  1. Is the field the same?
  2. Is the job the same?
  3. Are hours worked equal?

Once you have answered all of these questions, you can better understand if the wage gap is discriminatory in nature. It is important to look at wage gaps frequently and look at what facts and data tell us.

Watch this webinar and read this article that highlights studies conducted within optometry on the gender wage gap.

Once you have answered all of these questions, you can better understand if the wage gap is discriminatory in nature. It is important to look at wage gaps frequently and look at what facts and data tell us.

There are wage gaps in many health professions, not just optometry. The best place to start in addressing the wage gap is encouraging negotiation. Everyone can benefit from negotiating. What is interesting, is that women in optometry who negotiate were able to obtain a much higher starting salary than their base offering, reducing the difference in the wage gap of their male counterparts significantly but still not completely.

When it comes to negotiating, there are a few important things to consider:

  1. Leverage your support system and talk to your colleagues.
  2. Know what others who match your skill and experience are making.
  3. Understand your true value and worth.
  4. Don’t be afraid to walk away

It is important to know what and why you are negotiating and what you have to gain from negotiating relative to what you might lose if you are forced to walk away. You can negotiate for yourself, but there are groups and companies that are dedicated to negotiating that you can call upon for help as well.

Here are some helpful tips on how to negotiate a contract.

About Antonio Chirumbolo

Antonio Chirumbolo
Antonio Chirumbolo, OD, is Associate Director of Marketing at CovalentCareers. Antonio's focus is in the world of digital publications and healthcare marketing, with special attention on content creation, management, and development.

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