Career Focus


BMJ 1997; 314 doi: (Published 18 January 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:S3a-7075

“I have a dream: that one day every medical school in this country will have a department of medical humanities, a place where British medical students and doctors can learn about the history of their profession, where they can explore the changing social, political and cultural contexts that shape their knowledge and practice, where they can learn to appreciate the ethical and legal dimensions of their work and understand both the limits and the potential of their biomedical expertise, and where they can begin to recognise the uncertainties and risk in medicine and to develop the critical judgement needed for effective work in the clinic, the laboratory and the library.” And possibly learn to write shorter sentences. But Mark Jackson of the Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine makes a serious point in his editorial in Medical Education (Med Educ 1996;30:395-6). Might the logical corollary be a change in admission policies to make medicine more attractive to school humanities students?

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