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October 1971

Peer Review

Author Affiliations

Chairman Ad Hoc Committee on Peer Review American Academy of Dermatology

Arch Dermatol. 1971;104(4):343-344. doi:10.1001/archderm.1971.04000220001001

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Physicians have always been each others' severest critics. This disciplinary exercise, evolving out of enlightened self-interest and not from external coercion, has served substantially as motivation for excellence in medical practice and as energizer for medical progress. Despite vociferous pressure by lay medical "experts," physicians will not retreat from their valid contention that the only persons qualified to assess the abilities and practices of physicians are other physicians. If we falter in our resolution to keep our house in order, then self-anointed socioeconomic planners, who expound the arrogant philosophy that health care is too important to entrust to physicians, are ready and eager to take over.

In bygone days the physician's interaction was exclusively with his patient and the patient's family, and any dislocation of this relationship called for adjustment on a more or less personal basis. This position has changed with the intervention of a third party, usually the

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