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We were surprised and disappointed to see an advertisement for claret in this week's BMJ (7th December 2019). If the BMJ views itself as a scientific journal, private adverts have no place. Conversely, if the BMJ is simply a publication representing the British Medical Association, then our union appears to be propagating a James Robertson-Justice image of claret-drinking doctors that bears little relation to the reality of being a modern doctor and plays into media representations of overpaid privilege. Furthermore, with alcohol problems being more recognised in middle-aged drinkers, and at a time when there is acknowledgment and concern over the stresses of being a doctor, should alcohol advertisements be anywhere near a medical journal?
No competing interests
09 December 2019
Dr Robin Russell, consultant anaesthetist, Oxford University Hospitals