Views & Reviews In and Out of Hospital

An avalanche of apple pie: too many guidelines?

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 03 March 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c1208
  1. James Owen Drife, emeritus professor of obstetrics and gynaecology, Leeds
  1. J.O.Drife{at}

    A colleague recently calculated that, as lead for obstetrics in his hospital, he had received 3825 pages of advice, guidelines, and reports about maternity care from various bodies. I should point out, in case anyone from top management is listening, that “recently” means a year or two ago. Rest assured that he is on target, and his total must be well over 5000 by now.

    I was reminded of this last month at a meeting where a midwife’s presentation …

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