The BMJ Podcast

The BMJ is an international peer reviewed medical journal and a fully “online first” publication. The BMJ’s vision is to be the world’s most influential and widely read medical journal. Our mission is to lead the debate on health and to engage, inform, and stimulate doctors, researchers, and other health professionals in ways that will improve outcomes for patients. We aim to help doctors to make better decisions.

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Friday Sep 22, 2023

Ooops! If you listened to episode 3 when it first came out you may have realised that the title didn't quite match the content. We've just updated the title and the show notes below, and stay tuned for when we'll be soon releasing an episode on how sustainable healthcare can be good for patients.
In a system where healthcare workers are continually described as overworked and burnt out, how can we expect them to find the time to act on the climate? In this episode we turn that assumption on its head, and, in fact, show how acting to reduce the environmental impact of healthcare can help staff find joy in their work again. Our two guests today are Tracy Lyons, founder of Pharmacy Declares and medicines optimisation pharmacist in Dorset, UK, and David Smith, general surgeon at North York General Hospital in Toronto, Canada.
The very worst thing is sometimes to have a problem you feel you can’t solve, and action mitigates anxiety: these are two of the many lessons that came out of today’s episode. We also touch on the different levels that you can start to take action at: from the small and tangible to influencing change at a system level. 
Related links:  

Talking overdiagnosis

Saturday Sep 16, 2023

Saturday Sep 16, 2023

In this month's Talk Evidence, Helen and Juan are reporting from Preventing Overdiagnosis - the conference that raises issues of diagnostic accuracy, and asks if starting the process of medicalisation is always the right thing to do for patients.
In this episode, they talk about home testing, sustainability and screening. They're also joined by two guests to talk about the overdiagnosis of obesity - when that label is stigmatising and there seem to be few successful treatments that medicine can offer, and the need to educate students in the concepts of overdiagnosis and too much medicine, to create a culture change in medicine.
The Preventing Overdiagnosis conference
The BMJ EBM papers on choosing wisely.

Thursday Aug 31, 2023

Healthcare is a complex system, and if we want to make changes such as those needed for sustainable healthcare, we need to work across multiple teams, and make sure we hear everyone’s voice, including our patients’. In this episode we’ll discuss how we can communicate and work with those different groups, and some novel ways of getting the message across from T-rexes worth of plastic gloves to art made out of surgical waste.
Guests for this episode:
Nicola Wilson, lead clinical educator, Great Ormond Street Children’s hospital, and Maria Koijck, artist and former patient. You can read more about the Gloves are Off project here  
You can see Maria’s film here:

Thursday Aug 31, 2023

Planet centred care is new podcast series for the BMJ exploring issues related to environmentally sustainable healthcare, aimed at all clinicians, and anyone working in healthcare, who want to make sure they can continue to help patients while not harming the planet. 
In this episode we’ll discuss that first radicalising moment. That moment where you start to see all the things you can do to make healthcare more sustainable and how it is hard to un-see that. For everyone, that moment may come from a different place, or different perspective.
Our guests for this episode:
Gareth Murcutt who was at first reluctant until he saw the size of the impact he could make; Gwen Sims whose eyes were opened by moving health systems (and continents) and Alifia Chakera who didn’t expect to find a huge sustainability saving so close to home when she took up a new clinical role before the pandemic. 
Loren De Freitas and Florence Wedmore, the BMJ

Thursday Aug 17, 2023

In our final episode of this season, we're going quantitative, with the newly released data on how trainees in the UK are faring.
Each year the UK's General Medical Council, the doctor's regulator, surveys trainees in the NHS to ask them questions about stress and burnout, harassment and discrimination, and how well supported they feel in their training. They also ask trainers about the same things.
Unsurprisingly, the year the results look bad - with increasing levels of burnout across the board, but particularly in new trainees. At the same time trainers are feeling unable to use their time supporting learning, and instead are propping up the system.
To discuss this, Clara Munro and Ayisha Ashmore are joined by Colin Melville, medical director, and director of education and standards, at the GMC. 
All the data discussed, and the interactive tool that Colin mentions, are available on the GMC's National training survey 2023 results page.

Saturday Aug 05, 2023

In this month's Talk Evidence, we're getting a little meta - how do we keep an eye on research to make sure it's done with integrity. Helen Macdonald is BMJ's Publication ethics and content integrity editor - and we quiz her about what that actually means on a day to day basis.
Ensuring the integrity of research could be made both easier, and harder, by the ascendance of large language models, Ian Mulvany, BMJ's chief technology officer joins us to talk about how we can harness the power of this new technology.

Friday Jul 28, 2023

They're the trusted public figures of the medical profession, but many of the most famous medics in the UK will have been approached by, and accepted money from, companies wishing to promote their products - and the public will never know.
To talk about conflicts of interest in media doctors, we’re joined by two of the most recognisable medics on our screens - Chris and Xand van Tulleken, and the GP who persuaded them to think about what they receive cash for, Margaret McCartney.
Read our investigation into how the UK's medical royal colleges receive millions from drug and medical devices companies and Margaret McCartney's plea that “You have to be above reproach”: why doctors need to get better at managing their conflicts of interest

Friday Jun 30, 2023

In this episode of Talk Evidence,  Helen Macdonald, Joe Ross, and Juan Franco are back to update us on what's happening in the world of medical evidence.
Firstly, the news about the end of the covid-19 pandemic was trumpeted, but the changes to research funding have been more quite - and the team discuss what this means for ongoing work to understand the effects of covid, but also in terms of preparedness for the next pandemic.
Next, breast cancer screening recommendations, in the USA, have been reduced from women over the age of 50, to those over the age of 40. We discuss the modelling study which lead to that recommendation change, and what the consequence may be in terms of overdiagnosis.
Finally, 40 years ago, the U.S. Orphan Drug act was passed to encourage the development of treatments for rare conditions - but new research looks at how many clinically useful drugs have come onto market, and an analysis examines the way in which the system could be gamed by narrowing disease definitions to create small populations of patients.
Reading list
Is the UK losing its world leading covid surveillance network just when it needs it most?
Breast cancer: US recommends women start screening at 40
FDA approval, clinical trial evidence, efficacy, epidemiology, and price for non-orphan and ultra-rare, rare, and common orphan cancer drug indications

Pride in healthcare

Sunday Jun 18, 2023

Sunday Jun 18, 2023

We're in pride month, and this year the celebration of LGBT+ people seems to be increasingly contentious.  Healthcare's treatment of queer people has improved hugely since the days when being gay was considered a mental disorder, and would end a doctor's career - but that doesn't mean that everything is equal.
In this episode of Doctor Informed, we're hearing from two doctors who are out and proud at work, about what  it's been like to be queer in medicine, and what good allyship looks like.
Our Guests
Michael Farqhuar is consultant in sleep medicine at the Evelina London Children's Hospital, he also helped set up the NHS Rainbow badge scheme.
Greta McLachlan is a general surgical trainee, and member of the Royal College of Surgeon's Pride in Surgery Forum

Friday May 26, 2023

The culture which allows sexism to perpetuate in healthcare is no better illustrated than by The BMJ's investigation into sexual abuse in the NHS.
However, The BMJ are not the first organisation to highlight the problems - Surviving in Scrubs  have been collating stories of sexism in healthcare, and making waves about the issues for a while.
In this episode of Doctor Informed, Clara Munro is joined by the founders of Surviving in Scrubs, to discuss their campaign, how to create a culture of zero tolerance for sexism at the ward level, and why they think sexism should be a professional issue.
Our guests;
Becky Cox is an academic GP researching domestic abuse and GP specialist in gynaecology in Oxford.
Chelcie Jewitt is an emergency medicine trainee in Liverpool.
Bron Biddle, founder of Ambulance Voices, and an employee in the ambulance service.
Previous Doctor Informed interview with Baroness Helena Kennedy

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