BMJ Book Recommendations

After keeping up the book reviews for a while, I decided to look around for what books others are recommending for doctors. The first port of call is the BMJ which runs a series called BMJ Confidential. It interviews people it calls ‘movers and shakers‘ in healthcare. One of the 24 questions asked is : What book should every doctor read? 

So far 88 people have been interviewed in the series starting with Clare Gerada in October 2013 and most recently Pankaj Sharma in July 2015.

I went through the whole series, curious to know what books the healthcare leaders suggest, and which were the most popular.

There were 68 book recommendations ranging from healthcare to fiction. Eight books were suggested by more than one person. Here is the countdown of these 8 most recommended books.



Better: A Surgeon’s Notes on Performance by Atul Gawande

If This is a Man by Primo Levi

Intelligent Kindness: Reforming the Culture of Healthcare by John Ballatt and Penelope Campling


Love in the Time of Cholera  by Gabriel García Márquez

The House of God by Samuel Shem


The Citadel by A.J. Cronin

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman


A Fortunate Man: the Story of a Country Doctor by John Berger 


The full list has quite a few revealing and surprising choices. The reasons given to support the recommendations are even more interesting. Whilst I was at it, I also analysed the spread of specialties of the healthcare leaders, and this was curious to say the least. I may just write to the BMJ with a full analysis-perhaps it may get into the Christmas edition!

In the meantime back to the routine; working on my next book review: The Field Guide to Understanding Human Error by Sidney Dekker



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