Authors overestimate role of barefoot doctors in China

BMJ 1996; 312 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.312.7025.250a (Published 27 January 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:250
  1. Tony Jewell
  1. Consultant in public health medicine 2 Bury Road, Stapleford, Cambridge CB2 5BP

    EDITOR,—Paul Johnstone and Isobel McConnan are right to draw readers' attention to primary care in developing countries and its relevance for our “primary care led NHS.”1 I wish to make three points.

    In drawing attention to the appreciable reduction in childhood mortality in mainland China the authors overestimate the contribution that the barefoot doctors made in the late 1960s and the ‘70s (including the period of the Cultural Revolution). The …

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