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It is indeed a folly to expunge politically sensitive issues from a
general medical journal. However, those who have followed the evolution of
the BMJ may have noticed that politically sensitive topics involving its
owner(BMA), have been almost totally expunged from the journal. Before
such total exclusion was gradually introduced, some BMJ readers would
recall the medicolegal-political column which was a regular feature under
the editorship of Richard Smith.Similarly, there were wide coverage of
usual skirmishes at BMA's ARM. There also use to be the odd editorial and
news item critical of the BMA.Now the BMJ seems almost devoid of
politically sensitive issues relating to the BMA.That has also effectively
denied BMA members an opportunity to submit criticism in relation to the
BMA to rapid responses. Hence, underneath the hype of editorial
freedom,selective censorship seems to be thriving rather
surreptitiously.Perhaps, the BMJ is following the very recipe that the
former CMJA editor is protesting about.
To expunge politically sensitive topics from medical journals is “folly”
BMJ 2006; 332: 1175-a.
Supports freedom of expression including discussion of politically sensitive issues in a general medical journal.