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Br J Gen Pract. 2009 May 1; 59(562): 374.
PMCID: PMC2673166

GPs as investigators

Seldom have I read such patronising comments as those from Professors Mathers, Howe, and Field in their criticism of Julian Tudor Hart's discussion and defence of research coming from ‘ordinary’ working GPs.1 The rapidly diminishing input to our journal from all but a few GPs outside of academic departments is again exemplified by the April issue of the BJGP.

Mathers et al trumpet the ‘world class’ research from primary care while insisting that individual GPs working on their own can contribute no research of value, and by implication that unless they ask nicely for help from an academic GP department they really need not bother. I wonder how many other ordinary GPs who have published research over the years also find this viewpoint patronising, pompous, and even offensive?

Selection for publication should be judged on individual merit certainly, but not by academic censorship. As far as I am aware the BJGP is there for all.


1. Mathers N, Howe A, Field S. Clinical research by GPs in their own practices. Br J Gen Pract. 2009;59(561):296–297. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

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