Doctors and managers: Successful partnerships in New Zealand have been incorrectly portrayed

BMJ 2003; 326 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.326.7400.1213-d (Published 29 May 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;326:1213
  1. Sally M Widdowson, general practitioner (paul.corwin{at}chmeds.ac.nz)
  1. Sumner Health Centre 35, Nayland Street, Christchurch, New Zealand 8008

    EDITOR—As a practising clinician in New Zealand, I was interested to read the New Zealand perspective on the management-clinician interface in the article by Malcolm et al.1 However, even after several careful readings I was totally unable to relate it to my experience or that of my local general practitioner colleagues or (I presume) the hospital consultants in nearby Timaru, who have recently been driven to strike action.

    The sad reality is that with ongoing health “reforms” being driven through in a Machiavellian fashion, clinical morale here in New Zealand is lower than for decades, leading to a crisis in recruitment and retainment of medical staff.

    Unfortunately, this purportedly authoritative article was written by a group composed of neither clinicians nor managers, and it was almost entirely self referenced. These self styled experts have created a very rosy picture, but do not be fooled—the reality here is of a divide between clinicians and management that is as wide as ever.


    • Competing interests None declared.


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