Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Doctors and guidelines

Doctors can depart from guidelines in patients’ best interests

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: (Published 18 February 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h841
  1. Caroline Fryar, head of advisory services1
  1. 1Medical Defence Union, London E14 5GS, UK
  1. dawn.boyall{at}

The Medical Defence Union (MDU) is often asked about the medicolegal implications of guidelines so it might be helpful to clarify our advice.1 Members ask whether they are bound to follow guidelines or whether, after considering an individual patient’s circumstances, it may be appropriate to depart from guidelines. …

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