Re: Further Shame on the BMA

It is deeply disappointing to read the flow of misinformation from the BMA that is passed on by BMA News regarding organ removal. The latest example comes from an article entitled “Off The Record. Northern Ireland” (BMA News December 14th 2013).


The misinformation includes:


– directly linking the Organ Donor Register with organ availability and ignoring other variables;


– extrapolating public support in Northern Ireland based on a survey involving small numbers of respondents and lacking key details notably confidence intervals, and data on non-respondents;


– claiming family support is at the heart of a soft opt-out system. It is manifestly not part of the flawed legislation in Wales where a high level of evidence has to be provided by the family to protect their dying relative from organs being removed and there is no mention of family support.


It appears to be the same patronising conduct by the BMA in Northern Ireland as we experience in Wales. They produce a policy that is inimical to patients’ rights and then they select weak evidence to support that policy and ignore ethics and evidence against the policy.


BMA News should have higher publishing standards.

This entry was posted in General Public Health by Iain Robbe. Bookmark the permalink.

About Iain Robbe

I am a medical practitioner (MB, BS, 1980; MRCS, LRCP, 1980) registered with the General Medical Council of the United Kingdom. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic I have reactivated my licence to practise and I am providing telephone support to vulnerable elderly to assist them during the pandemic. I remain active as a Clinical Medical Educationist participating in a number of projects with the universities of St Mary’s and Dalhousie in Nova Scotia and Mount Allison in New Brunswick, inter alia, and separately with three of the veterinary schools in the UK. My focus is on teaching and research in professionalism, ethics, and communications, and particularly the influences of vernacular architecture on the creation of positive learning experiences in undergraduate and postgraduate medical education. I have the degree of Master in Public Health from the University of London (1985) and the degree of Master in Medical Education with distinction from the University of Wales (2001). The guiding principles in my practices are based on andragogy and humanism, and the prime ethical principle of autonomy for the individual and in population health.

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