Correspondence with the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence

This page lists correspondence with the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. On 3 December 2012 BMJ editor in chief Dr Fiona Godlee wrote to NICE's chair, Professor Sir Michael Rawlins. In her letter she says: "Now that serious doubts have been raised about the evidence behind claims for oseltamivir’s effectiveness and safety, I am asking you to withdraw approval for oseltamivir until NICE has received and reviewed the full clinical trial data and those anonymised data are available for independent scrutiny."

 

All rapid responses

Rapid responses are electronic letters to the editor. They enable our users to debate issues raised in articles published on bmj.com. Although a selection of rapid responses will be included as edited readers' letters in the weekly print issue of the BMJ, their first appearance online means that they are published articles. If you need the url (web address) of an individual response, perhaps for citation purposes, simply click on the response headline and copy the url from the browser window.
25 October 2014
Stavros Saripanidis
Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Thessaloniki, Greece
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1

Dear Editors,
Half of the 600,000 students in Greek public universities are inactive, and only 10% of those enrolled will ever manage to graduate. [1]
These "eternal students", long tolerated by the managements of tertiary institutions, will get permanently erased from the student registers in a few months. [2][3]
Maximum graduation deadlines are established for those remaining.
This unique and embarrassing phenomenon allowed Greek Universities to boast hundreds of thousands of additional registered students, claiming more State and European research and education funds.
Thousands of “eternal students” were living in free University dorms for decades! [4]
It is imperative to select able graduate students, to proceed in Medical Studies.
References
[1] http://www.grreporter.info/en/greek_phenomenon_eternal_student/3649
[2] http://greece.greekreporter.com/2014/03/05/greek-eternal-students-facing...
[3] http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite3_1_07/03/2014_537977
[4] http://greece.greekreporter.com/2012/12/23/student-booted-from-room-afte...

Competing interests: No competing interests

25 October 2014
Stavros Saripanidis
Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Thessaloniki, Greece
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1

Margaret : I concur with your sentiments except in relation to the damage to patient trust in their GPs.

Don't you think that many patients' respect for and trust in their GPs were fractured with the infamous [2004 ] Contract which absolved them from the obligation of out-of -hours service.

Competing interests: No competing interests

25 October 2014
Abdul Jaleel
Retired NHS Consultant
None
County Durham. England
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0

HIV is a social pathology that haunts the society. HIV prevention, awareness and sex education play an important role in AIDS control. The study reported and carried out by the premier institutes of India involved in AIDS research like YRG care centre,Chennai and St.Johns Institute of Medical sciences and Research, Banglore speak volumes about their service to the cause of AIDS prevention. Seminars, workshops and even messages through posters, postal messages including SMS will have definite effect on AIDS control. Particularly a call of enquiry reflects a concern for the patient and reflects the care taken by the caller. As AIDS treatment involves motivation and reminders such calls acting as reminders are helpful for the patient to understand the importance of therapy as well as to hear a voice of concern. Whether treatment outcomes are significant or not such calls could be a voice care for the patient. Mobile phone calls to all the patients registered in such centres or other centres will help to show that they are cared for.

Competing interests: No competing interests

25 October 2014
dhastagir s sheriff
Professor
Faculty of Medicine, Benghazi University, Benghazi
Benghazi, Libya
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Anyone can get flu and anyone can give the flue to some body else who may be at risk for serious complication of flu
New strains of flu virus each one has harmful to particular groups of people as H1N1 caused death for preterm babies and older people as well pregnant womens so vaccination everyone will protect flu spread to other people

Competing interests: No competing interests

25 October 2014
haifa sindi
pediatriañ
doctor
alfisaliah, Saudi arabia
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Even if the flu vaccine (and there is no "the" as some are injectable and some are mist, and different manufactures have different flu vaccines), people have the right to make personal medical decisions when they take on the inherent risks.

Better people take personal responsibility for their health via good diet and lifestyle measures rather than expect other people to risk their health under the illusion it will protect anyone.

Competing interests: No competing interests

25 October 2014
Winifred M. Harrison
Educator
20 Countryside Lane, Bantam, CT
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It's the time of the year when patients call or ring asking whether they should have the flu vaccine or telling me that they have already had theirs (incidentally, they usually ask about the Pneumococcus vaccine as well). As long as they fall within the defined at-risk groups I raise no eyebrows or objections, although I agree with the author's critical stance on the issue. However, when asked about my own status, I tell them that I was only vaccinated in the H1N1 epidemic year. There is a lot of hype in the flu field (and also a large waste of money), which leads to high expectations of the general public with disproportionately little actual benefit. Most of these people will get their common colds anyway, regardless of flu jabs. As regards repeat vaccination in February/March, I always advise against it.

Competing interests: No competing interests

24 October 2014
Papagiannis Anthony
Chest physician
St Luke's Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece
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Success is a mess. It divides us into a few winners and many losers. The winners boast and gloat, while the losers yearn to learn and earn. Why is society skewed and losers screwed? Perhaps winners are losers rescued by luck and pluck. And perhaps winners should share their success with losers, because charity and parity are the only real success.


Competing interests: No competing interests

24 October 2014
Hugh Mann
Physician
Retired
New York, USA
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2

There is no question in my mind, that - regardless of the practical inability to perform an RCT to prove the epidemiological effect of mass flu vaccination - changing the current recommendation will be inexcusable. As someone who works in an ED, and every winter sees the massive number of influenza cases we are confronted with, it seems to me that we do not have to prove again that parachutes work in order to suggest, that avoiding most (even if not all) the cases that would have occured in unvaccinated individuals saves lives.

Competing interests: No competing interests

24 October 2014
Pinchas Halpern
Chair of Emergency Medicine
Tel Aviv Medical Center
6 Weizmann Street, Tel Aviv, Israel
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4

Flu vaccination is yet another evidence poor policy being used as a stick with which to beat medical staff. As with all medical interventions it has its own set of risks and side effects, all for little or no benefit. It is about time the medical establishment starting standing up to such measures.

Competing interests: No competing interests

24 October 2014
Rohit P Silhi
SHO Intensive Care
Hempstead, Kent
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13

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