The widespread dangers of bad medicine

September 28, 2015

Guy Collender, Head of Alumni Communications and Marketing at the University of Oxford, reports from the Harms in Healthcare event, part of Oxford University’s Alumni Weekend on Saturday 19 September 2015.

Better evidence and communication are needed to avoid worrying harms in healthcare, according to a distinguished group of speakers from Oxford University’s Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences.

The failure to deliver the best treatment, the risks of overdiagnosis, and the proliferation of rogue online pharmacies were all emphasised during the talk during Oxford University’s Alumni Weekend.

Dr Ben Goldacre – a medical researcher at Oxford University and the author of bestseller Bad Science – was the first speaker at the packed Harms in Healthcare session at Oxford’s Museum of Natural History. The fast-talking and passionate academic emphasised the importance of evidence-based medicine and the need for doctors to be frank when communicating the risks and benefits of medicines to patients, all of whom have different perspectives on mortality, especially at different stages in their lives.

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