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Trust me, I'm a surgeon

BMJ 2000; 320 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.320.7239.948 (Published 01 April 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:948
  1. Abi Berger
  1. BMJ

    Trust Me, I'm a Doctor, BBC2, Wednesday 22 March at 7 30 pm

    “The only place where Bristol isn't going to happen again is Bristol,” warned a parent of one of the babies who died in Bristol on television last week. It makes sense. Shamed by disaster into openly publishing mortality figures for individual surgeons performing specific operations, paediatric cardiac surgery at Bristol must now be the most closely scrutinised surgical department in the country. And also the most transparent. See for yourself; the figures are posted on the internet. Bristol can hold its collective head up—paediatric cardiac surgery now boasts a better mortality figure than the national average.

    But apart from this fairly radical departure from the medical cultural norm in Britain, the rest of the country remains largely in the dark about surgical performance. Outcome measures do not fall readily to hand. According to this …

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