Intended for healthcare professionals

Feature Essay

No country for old men: on mentoring in medicine, by David Loxterkamp

BMJ 2017; 359 doi: (Published 18 December 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;359:j5756

Physician, heal thyself and thy profession

Physicians who reflexively blame themselves or their patients for poor clinical outcomes are overlooking other possibilities. While it is true that some physicians make mistakes and that some patients don’t cooperate, it is equally true that medical science is imperfect and that some treatment plans simply don’t work. This is why physicians often don’t enjoy better health than their patients. So disappointed or disaffected physicians and patients should learn to question the underlying philosophy and science of the medical profession.

Competing interests: No competing interests

18 December 2017
Hugh Mann
New York, NY, USA