Sun, 17 Oct 2004 08:58:21 -0400
but there is a serious problem with a requirement to give such advice.
Doctors will have an incentive to avoid difficult cases in order
to maintain their batting averages at an elevated level. Patients
with slim chances will have difficulties in obtaining treatment.
Wouldn't the Bristol doctors have had a tendency to unreasonably
downplay the chances of success for patients with lower chances
of success in order to dissuade them from undergoing the operation,
even when the operation was the clearly indicated protocol?
statistics don't tell the whole story. Did Kennedy's inquiry disclose
the factors behind the poor stats of the Bristol doctors?
10/17/04 11:01 AM, michael furmston wrote:
is not necessarily absurd to think that one result of the warning
would be to have the operation done by somebody else. There was
a major scandal in Bristol a few years ago because a group of
doctors specialising in heart surgery for young children had statistically
bad results and did not tell parents. There was not as far as
I know any litigation but there were successful disciplinary proceedings
and a long and complex public enquiry by Ian Kennedy. I think
a surgeon ought now to know what his batting average is; whether
it is above or below the mean and to advise accordingly.
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