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David Payne

The BMJ Today: Polling day

13 Jan, 15 | by BMJ

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)Tuesday is the day we change our weekly UK poll, which enables us to promote the new topic in the weekly print issue (Tuesday is also press day). Our current one asks if doctors should encourage patients to record consultations, linked to a head to head article published last week. At the time of writing, two thirds of the 278 votes cast say no. more…

The BMJ Today: My mum and Richard Smith

12 Jan, 15 | by BMJ

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)Yesterday my mum, who died of cancer in February 2007, would have been 91. I’m not an expert on death and so do not know whether hers was “good” or not, but I’ll never forget the last six months of her life, when we knew she was dying and had to make the most of having her around. more…

David Payne: Digital dilemmas—a day in my life at The BMJ

12 Dec, 14 | by BMJ Group

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)Wednesday December 10.

8.30am: I’m on the bus into work and checking Twitter when I see an exchange between @garyschwitzer and @bengoldacre about some embargoed papers we press released last night, (including Ben’s editorial and a linked research paper about the association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases), not showing on

I apologise to @garyschwitzer and explain why I think they aren’t working. more…

The BMJ Today: Male circumcision and medical suicides

8 Dec, 14 | by BMJ

thebmj-MSF-Xmas-Banner-300x250The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending that doctors start telling uncircumcised sexually active teenage boys they can reduce their risk of contracting HIV and other sexually transmitted disease if they have the surgery. The draft proposal also applies to adult heterosexual men and for expectant parents as they decide about newborn circumcision.

The BMJ’s US correspondent Mike McCarthy reminds us that the CDC tempers its proposed guidance by noting that the decision to undergo circumcision is “made in the context of not only health considerations, but also other social, cultural, ethical, and religious factors.” more…

The BMJ Today: What’s in a name?

4 Nov, 14 | by BMJ

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)Next time you sneak a peek at an author’s affiliations, ask yourself if they mattered to you. Do you pay more attention to a study from Harvard University in the United States or one from the University of Abuja in Nigeria?

Matthew Harris asks this question in a personal view, arguing that omitting the provenance of research in published reports might reduce bias when readers assess their use.

He describes one controversial experiment, when published scientific articles were resubmitted with fictitious names and institutions to the prestigious journals that had published them 18 months earlier. more…

The BMJ Today: Managers need to get ‘aht the flippin’ way

3 Nov, 14 | by BMJ Group

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)Many thanks to consultant psychiatrist Geoff Searle for providing the headline for today’s BMJ Today, shamelessly stolen from his weekend rapid response to the essay about “flipping healthcare,” published last week by US authors Maureen Bisognano and Dan Schummers.

Flipping, the authors argue, is the key to providing better care and lowering costs, shifting the power from hospital to community, from individual providers to care teams, and lowering costs in the process.

In times of challenge, they conclude, leaders often resort to asking their organisations to work harder, put in longer hours, or cut budgets, adding: “We owe more to our patients and communities.” more…

Readers’ editor: Inserts in the print issue

30 Sep, 14 | by BMJ Group

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)If you shake the current print issue of The BMJ, a cluster of inserts fall to the ground, among them a wine club promotion, an online menswear retailer, and a charity appeal from the Refugee Council.

Sometimes readers do challenge the accuracy of information in these inserts, or question our decision to accept money from organisations whose views they do not agree with.

Last year, for example, a reader complained about an insert from the organisation Campaign for Dignity in Dying, which wants to legalise assisted dying in the UK, subject to certain safeguards. more…

David Payne: A London lullaby factory, and other open buildings

17 Sep, 14 | by BMJ Group

havenA hospital “lullaby factory” and a children’s hospice extension in the style of a garden shed are among 15 health related buildings to welcome visitors as part of Open House London this weekend.

Haven House Children’s Hospice has leased The White House, an Edwardian Arts and Crafts building, since 2002. Earlier this year the charity, based in Woodford, Essex, extended its premises by opening a timber-clad “garden shed” (pictured above). Inside are two consulting rooms for Great Ormond Street Hospital doctors, a music therapy room, and activity space. more…

The BMJ Today: Ebola, Edinburgh, edifices

26 Aug, 14 | by BMJ

deputy chair of MJA on stage (1)Ebola and the forthcoming referendum on Scottish independence have, among other things, spared UK national newspaper editors the anxiety of how to fill column inches in the “silly season” month of August. The BMJ can at least drop a print and iPad issue, as it is doing this week, but we and other general medical journals are devoting online space to showcase resources about the Ebola outbreak. Visit to find out more. more…

The BMJ Today: Feet and fudge

25 Jul, 14 | by BMJ Group

davidpayneA calcaneal fracture can mean a two year recovery, with a stiff, painful, deformed foot that will not fit into a normal shoe.

How does operative and non-operative treatment for intra-articular fractures compare?

A research team led by Damian Griffin, professor of trauma and orthopaedic surgery at Warwick University Medical School, conclude in their randomised controlled trial that operative treatment by open reduction and internal fixation is not recommended. more…

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