Letter: Doctors need care

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The Independent Culture
Sir: While the encouragement of compassion among medical students is clearly to be welcomed, why must it always be assumed (leading article, 26 August) that high academic standards and compassion are incompatible? Intelligence never seems to stand in the way of compassion for countless writers, musicians, painters, or even journalists.

A much more plausible culprit for both lack of compassion and arrogance displayed in negligence cases is the exclusive, tribal, male-dominated laddishness to be found among many medical students and occasionally their superiors, which is not, on the whole, the result of too long in the library.


Guildford, Surrey