Other PERSONAL VIEW

Moving on from Shipman

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.331.7513.411 (Published 11 August 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:411
  1. Vikram Tanna, general practitioner (v_t@btinternet.com)
  1. Hyde, Greater Manchester VT is a member of council of the Royal College of General Practitioners

    Our profession needs to face head on the issues raised in the report of the Shipman inquiry. The main charges against the profession are structural and cultural. The structural and systematic loopholes that allowed Shipman, Ledward, and others to go undetected for years are being addressed by the chief medical officer's review of the General Medical Council and its proposals for revalidation of doctors. What about the “medical culture” that allowed these events to occur? What about the charge of collusion, the charge of a doctors' “club” looking after doctors? What about the culture that frowns on a doctor who questions colleagues or superiors about their practice? How do we change the culture of a profession? I think large parts of our profession are still in a state of denial.

    We get frustrated when some doctors talk as though nothing needs to change much

    I worked in the same area as Harold Shipman. The doctors in …

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