Intended for healthcare professionals


Medical examiners employed by health authorities should audit death certificates

BMJ 1999; 318 doi: (Published 05 June 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;318:1559
  1. Gordon Pledger, Medical referee. (
  1. Oaktree Cottage, Mitford, Morpeth NE61 3PN

    EDITOR—Horner may be right that there is an impending crisis in recruiting medical referees to crematoria, but I disagree with his assertion that abandoning the present system would be hazardous.1 Presumably the hazard is failing to detect a homicide, but the Brodrick committee concluded in 1971 that “secret homicide has not been a significant danger at any time in the past 50 years.”2

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