Medicopolitical Digest

WMA looks at doctors' role when resources are limitedGPs were inadequately consulted over community careMPs reject bill to ban boxingRescued private hospital takes NHS patientsCommunity health councils will have code of conductNHS introduces quarterly reviewComplaints implementation group needs more doctors

BMJ 1995; 310 doi: (Published 22 April 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;310:1074

WMA looks at doctors' role when resources are limited

At its recent meeting in France the council of the World Medical Association decided that doctors had to balance the ethical principle of fairness for all patients against their duty to seek the best treatment for their own patients. Members were considering a draft paper on aspects of the allocation of health care resources and the doctors' role. Some believed that they had no such role, some distinguished between their own resources and those of society, and some considered that they had a responsibility to other patients besides their own. A further paper will be prepared for national medical associations to consider.

The council expressed concern about the increasing use of weapons, including antipersonnel mines which target civilian populations indiscriminately. It supported the campaign by the International Committee of the Red Cross to publicise the devastating effects of landmines and to convince governments to take preventive and remedial measures to reduce the number of victims.

The WMA has agreed to collaborate with other organisations, such as the World Health Organisation, on the increase in antibiotic resistant organisms. The representatives of the American Medical Association said that they were concerned that the misuse and overuse of antibiotics would result in useless drugs and in pathogenic micro-organisms that were resistant to many if not all currently available antibiotics.

The WMA, which is an independent confederation of 64 national medical associations, will meet next in Bali, Indonesia, in September.

GPs were inadequately consulted over community care

General practitioners in the North Thames region say that they were not consulted adequately before the community care reforms were introduced; that the aims of enhanced choice …

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