Standards, attitudes and accountability in the medical profession

Lancet. 1985 Sep 7;2(8454):546-7. doi: 10.1016/s0140-6736(85)90474-x.


KIE: As a spokesperson for a British patient advocacy group, Action for the Victims of Medical Accidents (AVMA), the author outlines the aims of the organization and the factors contributing to unsatisfactory resolution of cases involving such accidents. He points out that 70% of the clients of AVMA seek a good explanation of what happened rather than compensation. Accountability in the medical profession is inadequate, and care often comes to a halt when something goes wrong because no one wants to take responsibility. Disclosure of medical records is sometimes resisted because the records will reveal negligence. In the author's opinion, frank disclosure is the only reasonable policy in the wake of a medical accident.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Compensation and Redress
  • Humans
  • Malpractice / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Patient Access to Records
  • Patient Rights
  • Quality of Health Care / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Social Responsibility
  • Trust
  • United Kingdom
  • United States