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Edited by H-J Steiger and E Uhl (Pp 227, EUR108.000). Published by Springer Verlag Wien, Wien, 2001. ISBN 3-211-83678-0
This is an interesting and timely publication. The book contains a compilation of material presented at an international meeting held in October 2002. It has been divided into various sections that take the reader through grouped papers and topics and finally a projection into the future. As would be expected, the material covers experience and lessons gained in other areas such as aviation and nuclear research. The authors, generally senior in status, originate from Europe, the United States, and the United Kingdom and therefore offer a diverse collection of views, opinions, and experience relevant to a very wide readership. The increasing requirements for quality assessment and competency make this a very valuable reference book for both departmental and institutional libraries. However, it certainly will be of value to individual readers. It should be recommended reading for trainees to understand the principles and the ongoing thought behind many of the practices and control measures that they will encounter and will need to participate in as their experience and seniority advance. The quality of contributions and the outline of the information do vary, as would be expected in such a compilation, but overall very few pages or chapters do not prove insightful nor provide useful information and guidelines. It will be of value to all medical disciplines, since the principles are universal and the terms of reference or yardsticks used are convertible or transferable. It is highly recommended.