Editorials

Doctors who smoke

BMJ 1995; 311 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.311.6998.142 (Published 15 July 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;311:142
  1. Simon Chapman, Associate professor
  1. Department of Public Health and Community Medicine University of Sydney, Westmead Hospital, Westmead, NSW 2145, Australia

    Should medical students who smoke be channelled away from primary care?

    An apocryphal tale in public health, said to have originated from a candid tobacco industry executive, is that each doctor who smokes is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars to the industry. This is certainly an understatement when it comes to the small group of well rewarded doctors and scientists who routinely do the industry's bidding for them in government inquiries and in the media.1 But what of general practitioners who smoke? There are two considerations here.

    The first consideration concerns doctors' roles and, many would add, responsibilities as exemplars. A recent Australian study of smokers from low socioeconomic groups found that half of them agreed with …

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