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March 17, 1989

This St Patrick's Day Finds No Lack of Controversy at Irish Medical Journal

JAMA. 1989;261(11):1543-1549. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420110017003

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THE IRISH MEDICAL JOURNAL (IMJ) died in December 1987 and, by most accounts, it was not a pleasant death. The reasons for its sudden and traumatic demise—and recent resurrection—are many and conflicting, depending on the source.

Death for the medical monthly came after a distinguished and uninterrupted 50 years of publication. It had gained the reputation both inside and outside the Republic of Ireland as the authentic scientific and medical forum for the country's physicians.

What actually killed the journal was a vote taken in October 1987 at the annual meeting in Kilkenny of the Irish Medical Organization (IMO). The IMO, which publishes the journal, is a physician's trade union dedicated to ensuring the professional and economic status of its members.

The organization's treasurer delivered a report that indicated that the journal was deeply in the red and that its future looked bleak. Although only a small minority of the