Observations Ethics Man

The ethical gift box: suggestions for improving the ethical conduct of doctors

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f1915 (Published 25 March 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f1915
  1. Daniel K Sokol, honorary senior lecturer, medical ethics and law, King’s College London, and practising barrister
  1. daniel.sokol{at}talk21.com

In the face of gloomy news about wayward doctors, let us seek enthusiastic authors to raise the spirits of the profession

In a recent issue of BMA News one core trainee who was 28 weeks pregnant recounted how one consultant told her that she would “never achieve consultancy” and how another remarked that there was little point in teaching her as she would forget it all on maternity leave.1

Last month a student came to see me about the possibility of appealing against the result of a failed exam. She told me that some private general practitioners, in exchange for a fee, would compose letters affirming that a student had been depressed when sitting the exam, whatever the truth.

Late last year a former army GP was struck off for not reporting serious injuries inflicted on one of his patients by British forces in Iraq and for lying to investigators about the incident.2 And in February this year the Francis report of the Mid Staffs public inquiry painted a bleak picture of the …

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