According to a BBC report, the first, titled Why do Doctors Fail?, will examine whether failure in medicine is down to ignorance or ineptitude. It will be followed by The Century of the System, in which Dr Gawande will focus on the development of systems from simple checklists to complex mechanisms.
The third lecture, The Problem of Hubris, will explore aging and death, while the fourth, The Idea of Wellbeing, will argue for a shift in medicine's priorities. "Atul Gawande is a significant intellectual and practitioner in global health," said Gwyneth Williams, Radio 4's controller. "I look forward to the opportunity he will surely provide for us to bring our thinking up to date and perhaps to re-evaluate our approach." The BBC Reith Lectures - named after John Reith, the BBC's first director general - have been held since 1948, the year the philosopher Bertrand Russell spoke on 'Authority and the Individual'. (PTI)