James McCormick on The place of judgement in medicine (1994)
THESE quotations come from Theodore Fox’s article ‘Purposes of medicine’, published in 1965. Since then there has been little emphasis upon the need for wisdom or judgement in medicine.
Despite the efforts of academic general practice, graduates from our medical schools seem to have been persuaded that medi cine can be practised by some form of rule book. If the recom mended procedures are followed the right diagnosis and appro priate treatment will almost automatically ensue and there should be no room for uncertainty. As a result they find the inevitable uncertainties of hospital medicine and even more those of gener al practice hard to cope with.