Intended for healthcare professionals

Observations BMJ Confidential

Susan Bewley: Still hoping to make a difference

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 06 March 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g1936

In the latest in its series asking the movers and shakers of the medical world about work, life, and less serious matters, the BMJ spoke to the breast cancer screening sceptic


Susan Bewley, 55, specialises in tricky births. A professor of complex obstetrics at King’s College, London, she is a clinical academic with wide ranging interests but is focused on severe maternal morbidity. Evidence is important to her: she triggered a national review of breast cancer screening with an open letter to the BMJ arguing that NHS leaflets given to women exaggerated the benefits and failed to spell out the risks.1 And, as a trustee of Healthwatch, she has attacked homeopathy as “naked quackery.”

What was your earliest ambition?

Getting published in the BMJ, of course!2

Who has been your biggest inspiration?

My hardworking parents; at 87 my father is busy writing his latest book (a Quaker psychiatrist’s view of pacifism). …

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