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Nigel Hawkes :: Thu, 09/09/2010 - 13:43

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Hospital mortality – the genie is out of the bottle

The Health Secretary, Andrew Lansley, is very keen on measuring healthcare by its outcomes, and there’s no more unambiguous outcome than dying.

Nigel Hawkes :: Thu, 09/09/2010 - 09:56

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More pressure to dump home birth study

A letter in the current issue of the BMJ (4 September, p 473) calls for the withdrawal of an American study criticised

Nigel Hawkes :: Thu, 02/09/2010 - 14:25

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Mixed record card for flagship mental health scheme

To the new health secretary, Andrew Lansley, target is a dirty word. He prefers outcome measures – actual results that show treatments are working.

Nigel Hawkes :: Tue, 10/08/2010 - 15:47

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How the overtreatment of diabetics may have cost lives

A brief period in which British family doctors were offered a financial inducement to treat diabetic patients more intensively could be coming to an end.

Mon, 14/06/2010 - 10:10

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Do antidepressants work?

Controversy over the effectiveness of antidepressants such as Prozac, provoked by an article by Irving Kirsch and colleagues in 2008 in PLOS Medicine, shows no sign of declining.

Nigel Hawkes :: Wed, 05/05/2010 - 14:08

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Presumed consent could increase organ donation rates

Gordon Brown’s in favour. So is the Chief Medical Officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, the Scottish National Party, Plaid Cymru, and other parties.

Nigel Hawkes :: Mon, 03/05/2010 - 17:10

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Haves, have-nots, and have-yachts: a tale of PCT allocations

Of all the magnificent sleights of hand attributed to statistical science, few come close to matching the formula by which NHS funds are allocated to primary care trusts (PCTs).

Nigel Hawkes :: Fri, 30/04/2010 - 11:13

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The coding maze: mortality ratios and real life

Much anxiety has been caused by the publication over the past decade of hospital mortality ratios.

Nigel Hawkes :: Thu, 21/01/2010 - 16:02

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Safeguarding scheme hit by “double jeopardy” fears

Back in September, I asked the Independent Safeguarding Authority how it had arrived at the figure of 11.3 million adults who would need to be vetted before they could be allowed regular access to children (their own excluded, naturally).

Nigel Hawkes :: Thu, 21/01/2010 - 13:59

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Getting the needle

More than three quarters of US medical students believe that Western medicine would benefit from integrating more complementary and alternative therapies and ideas.