Changing the Face of Medicine: Celebrating America's Women Physicians


  • Each library wishing to show films or videos related to Changing the Face of Medicine; to the public must arrange for its own public performance rights (PPR)

  • Swank Motion Pictures, Inc. now offers a Movie Public Performance Site License to libraries on an annual basis. Information is at

  • Please share information about films and videos with other libraries on the tour through the Changing the Face of Medicine electronic discussion site. The ALA Public Programs Office will also pass along to you any film information we find.

Some films and videos about women in medicine:

Note: Dr. Peter Dans, Associate Professor of Internal Medicine and Health Policy and Management at Johns Hopkins University, who researches physicians in film, notes that "the good news for budding filmmakers is that the great American woman doctor film has yet to be made."

Dr. Dans lectures on "Women Doctors in the Movies: Where Are They?"; and has written the book Doctors in the Movies: Boil the Water and Just Say Aah (Medi-ed Press, 2000).

The NLM web site features a list of videos about women in medicine at:

Others films include:

The Girl in White (1952), directed by John Sturges. June Allyson plays the first woman doctor in New York, Dr. Emily Dunning Barringer, in this well-reviewed film.

Spellbound (1945), directed by Alfred Hitchcock. A stretch, but Ingrid Bergman plays a psychiatrist in this classic.

Unfortunately, most movies with a woman physician as a principal character have received poor reviews. The longest list of movies featuring women physicians is at:…