eLetters

154 e-Letters

published between 2003 and 2006

  • How would that work then?
    Joy Wingfield

    Dear Editor,

    I sympathise strongly with Sokol and Car's sentiments about the use of passwords for telephone transfer of patient information. However, I struggle with the practicalities. In community pharmacy there are daily communications between pharmacists and GPs or hospital consultants, often unknown and remotely located from each other, to clarify prescriptions, suggest alternatives, etc.

    In communi...

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  • Reasons not to test children at risk of adult onsent disease
    Anneke Lucassen

    Dear Editor,

    We congratulate Malpas on an eloquent paper but disagree with her conclusions: If it is appropriate to tell a child that they are at risk of some illness in adult life, Malpas argues, then it must be appropriate to tell them if they are actually going on to develop it. Such an action may of course be entirely appropriate for conditions which affect children, or where there is some medical intervention in...

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  • Statistical analysis of decision making by research ethics committees
    Charles Lee

    Dear Editor,

    Angell et al conclude on the basis of the data that they present that the level of agreement between the ethics committees studied “may be described as slight” although it is “probably better than chance”. They do include the caveat that “polarised response categories…make the interpretation of κ statistics difficult”. There is no point in using a statistical test to make a judgement about the probability of...

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  • Regarding the Groningen Protocol
    Bertha A. Manninen

    Dear ditor,

    It has recently been brought to my attention that the physicians of the Groningen Hospital who originally proposed the Groningen Protocol have proposed to violate the first two conditions of the original Groningen Protocol:

    (1) The suffering must be so severe that the infant has no prospects for a future. (2) There is no possibility that the infant can be cured or alleviated of her affliction w...

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  • Researchers' appreciation of ethics
    Dr Frank M Bowman

    Dear Editor,

    Angell et al found that in 'only' 11/18 research applications did three research ethics committees agree entirely. I note that in 4/7 cases of disagreement, this was due to a mix of provisional and unfavourable opinions which I suggest reflects the willingness of many committees to offer a (very) provisional opinion to inadequately prepared researchers to help them to salvage their proposal and avoid th...

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  • We should not engage in futile discussion of resuscitation
    Idris Baker

    Dear Editor,

    We agree with Schildman and colleagues1 that there is a need for better information about doctors’ and patients' thoughts on resuscitation decision making and that good teaching of medical ethics to undergraduates is likely to be a key step in ensuring sound decision-making by doctors.

    Among their important findings are those showing that most doctors who have been formally trained in clinica...

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  • Parthonogenetically created stem cells: A middle ground to take
    Bing H. Tang

    Dear Editor,

    Unfortunately, scientists have used fetal tissue in research since at least the 1930s, now the secrets of the Dead-Baby Industry reveal that aborted fetuses being dissected alive, harvested and sold in pieces to fuel a vast research enterprise. There are social implications of its existence. We all need moral intensity these days. We all need to take it very seriously. Patel¡¦s paper is written to obvia...

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  • Response to Ashwini Oswal
    Christopher Cowley

    Dear Editor,

    I have been accused of creating "prejudices" and of "force-feeding" others my own viewpoint. This seems a bit strong. Yes, it was a polemic, and so is by definition one-sided, but this should be taken as an invitation to discussion about what I think is an important question: which applicants are most likely to become the best doctors? And that itself depends on the question of what is a good doctor....

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  • Let’s move towards creating a fairer applications procedure and not just shifting the existing bias
    Ashwini Oswal

    Dear Editor,

    Although Cowley (Polemic: five proposals for a medical school admission policy J Med Ethics 2006; 32: 491-494) writes an engaging and entertaining account of how medical school selection criteria could be modified to avoid many of the traditional biases, my main criticism is that the author creates his own prejudices by force feeding us his own viewpoint instead of providing a truly objective and balanc...

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  • A Humanities 'A' Level will make for a well rounded medical student.
    Ranjit S Bains

    Dear Editor,

    - I read with interest the article titled "Polemic: five proposals for a medical school admission policy" by C Cowley.

    There are two points I would like to make. As a pre-clinical Medical Student i can appreciate the advantage of having a humanities 'A' Level as this will lead to students acquiring skills that they may not normally acquire in a Science 'A' Level, for example the ability to write...

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