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The show must go on

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.322.7280.245 (Published 27 January 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:245
  1. Robert Baker, specialist registrar
  1. HIV medicine, Royal Free Hospital

    Declarations of conflict of interest usually come at the end of journal articles, but here's mine now. On 12 December 2000 the BMJ's editor broke new ground by combining the journal's annual Christmas party with a revue of sketches and songs in the style of the traditional medical student show. I performed, alongside 10 other acts that had submitted sketches after editor Richard Smith's published invitation.

    Medical student reviews are, of course, not famous for the maturity of their material, and I was interested to see if the BMJ's version would be any more sophisticated. The answer was yes, and no. It was reassuring that not one performer made jokes at patients' expense. I think we all know now that House of God style sick jokes about ill people are deeply suspect. We are well shot of them.

    Despite tables at the back of the auditorium being stacked with food and drink, none of it was thrown

    So rather than patients, the most popular target was health secretary …

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