Views And Reviews Medicine and books

What Are Doctors For?; Do We Still Need Doctors?

BMJ 1998; 316 doi: (Published 28 March 1998) Cite this as: BMJ 1998;316:1028
  1. Peter Herbert
  1. Temple Fortune Health Centre, London

    What Are Doctors For?

    Ed David Hart

    Community Health UK, £8.50, pp 62

    Do We Still Need Doctors?

    John D Lantos

    Routledge, £17.99, pp 224

    ISBN 0 415 91852 9

    Are the wheels coming off medicine in the 1990s or has it always seemed like this? Do we really not know what we are for and where we are going? Have we reached the end of the road, or is it just a turning point or a crossroads? Doctors are uncertain as never before as to what it means to be a doctor. What has happened to the good old fashioned doctoring, when doctors and patients knew what was what and all was well with the world?

    Two books with very gloomy titles cover this subject, although they are certainly not gloomy in themselves. What Are Doctors For? is a series of interviews with British general practitioners, all of whom have extra strings to their bows, like being poets and pastors and storytellers in their …

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