BMJ 2009; 338 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.b162 (Published 21 January 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b162

Breast care nurses are perceived as equally supportive by depressed and non-depressed patients, but surgeons and ward nurses are perceived as less supportive by depressed patients (Annals of the Royal College of Surgeons of England 2009;91:43-5, doi:10.1308/003588409X359006). The findings come from a study in which 31 (9%) of 355 women showed evidence of depression after undergoing mastectomy or wide local excision for breast cancer, and confirm the special role that breast care nurses play. Minerva wonders what these nurses do that others don’t.

A prospective study of a crisis resolution team for mental health patients reports that for the group that had access to the team, the average costs at 6 month follow-up were lower than for those who received existing services, but this difference was not statistically significant (Psychiatric Bulletin 2009;33:17-9, doi:10.1192/pb.bp.107.018648). However, costs in patients with any crisis team contact were significantly lower in those with no contact, by an average of £2189.

Disclosure and apologies usually follow mistakes, but the fear of litigation in healthcare can over-ride the …

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