Seven days in medicine: 22-28 February 2017BMJ 2017; 356 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j1057 (Published 02 March 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;356:j1057
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I was concerned to see that in the " Doctors In The News " article, sandwiched between an article on a senior doctor arrested on suspicion of voyeurism and a senior doctor convicted of deliberately injuring patients, was an article on a junior doctor being allowed to resume practice after a 12 month suspension for research fraud. I share the BMJ's horror of research fraud and had the article been written at the time she was suspended I would have expressed no concerns. It would act as a marker of the profession's disapprobation and a warning to others. The fact that she was suspended indicates that it was thought there was a possibility that she would learn from the experience and the fact that the suspension was lifted indicates that the tribunal were satisfied with the evidence presented that this was the case. As an educationalist, I would be hoping to support her return to medical practice and for her to work towards becoming a competent and valued member of our profession.
Whether or not it is the intention of the BMJ, there is a feeling of the professional pillory in these articles. The BMJ can publish such a story but I would like the editors to reflect on the purpose of doing so and whether they should.
Competing interests: DME at the hospital Dr Doolub was working at when she was suspended