Intended for healthcare professionals

Views & Reviews Starting Out

We need more rationality around cancer

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 09 February 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d769
  1. Kinesh Patel, junior doctor, London
  1. kinesh_patel{at}

“I can’t see why I’ve waited so long,” she said. “I’m a cancer patient.”

She had been seen sooner than most. I flicked through the notes to try to get a handle on what was going on. I quickly scanned the last letter from the oncologist, finding it in among a pile of paperwork relating to swabs for meticillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus, property receipts, and other rather unhelpful documents.

“But you’ve been cured,” I said. “That’s what your oncologist says.” …

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