Outcomes of screening to prevent cancer

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.327.7405.50-a (Published 03 July 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:50

Authors' reply

  1. A E Raffle, consultant in public health medicine (angela.raffle@bristolnorth-pct.nhs.uk),
  2. B Alden, systems analyst,
  3. M Quinn, director,
  4. P J Babb, senior cancer epidemiologist,
  5. M T Brett, consultant pathologist
  1. Bristol North Primary Care Trust, King Square House, Bristol BS2 8EE
  2. National Cancer Intelligence Centre, Office for National Statistics, London SW1V 2QQ
  3. Department of Cellular Pathology, Cytopathology Section, Southmead Hospital, Bristol BS10 5NB

    EDITOR—We agree that screening can be thought of like insurance. It is not the likelihood of a house fire that makes you pay your premiums, it is the seriousness.

    We believe numbers screened are valuable. Policy about screening is unsatisfactory in that support for, or dismissal of, the worth of screening programmes is dominated by advocacy rather than scientific debate.1 …

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