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Plea for more ambulances

Phil Peverley's article 'Bird's eye view' (Columnists, April 30) demeans your journal and demeans women in medicine. Referring to women doctors as chicks, boilers, broads, blart and totty, to name just a few, is offensive and insulting.

With the facade of being pro-woman, he behaves in an unseemly and sexist manner. Perhaps this is his way of making up for deficiencies elsewhere.

Dr Clarissa Fabre

Honorary Secretary

Medical Women's Federation

Phil Peverley replies:

I am sorry that Dr Fabre considered my piece insulting. However, she is in fact feeling insulted by the wrong part of it. I wrote a generic, insincere and inaccurate (but all too commonly seen) essay lauding the equal opportunities theoretically available to women in medicine.

Then I replaced all the references to women with depersonalising and insulting male nouns for females.

My intention, by not even bothering to 'talk the talk', was to demonstrate that men in medicine are very far from 'walking the walk', and that equality in medicine is by no means with us as yet.

However, as I'm having to explain it, I assume I didn't do it very well. My wife, who is a GP, saw what I was aiming at immediately, but she knows me better than most.

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