The Doctor's Dilemma

Hosted by LSE Festival: Beveridge 2.0

Shaw Library, 6th Floor, Old Building


Dr Anna Smielewska

Dr Anna Smielewska

Professor Alex Voorhoeve

Professor Alex Voorhoeve

LSE Language Centre, in collaboration with the Department of Philosophy and Scientific Method and the LSE Students' Union Drama Society, present an evening of analysis and discussion of health service resource allocation and medical ethics.

Professor Alex Voorhoeve, who specialises in this field, as well as publishing and broadcasting on the topic, discusses these issues together with Dr Anna Smielewska, an NHS professional from Addenbrooke’s Hospital, University of Cambridge.

The evening will culminate in a staged production of Shaw’s 1906 play The Doctor’s Dilemma. A top Harley Street consultant, who has a cure for tuberculosis but only a very limited supply of the drug, must choose between saving from certain death a well-meaning and selfless yet mediocre East End GP or an artist whose works possess genius though he himself is described as a ‘scoundrel’.

Beveridge was coached by Shaw in 1907, when addressing Parliament on Social Insurance, and in 1942, when he delivered his Report paving the way for the NHS, Shaw characteristically claimed in the press ‘if he were alive now Karl Marx would probably denounce Sir William Beveridge as a rascally appeaser, trying to ransom capitalism for another spell by his Report’ but, Shaw said, Beveridge was no rascal.

Anna Smielewska is a Registrar in Clinical Virology in Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge. She has experience in diverse hospital settings including outpatients, intensive care and pathology. She is currently researching new approaches to treating respiratory viruses.

Alex Voorhoeve is Professor in the Department of Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method at LSE. He works on the theory and practice of distributive justice, in particular on fair priority setting in health.

Twitter hashtags for this event: #LSEBeveridge #LSEFestival

This event is part of the LSE Festival: Beveridge 2.0 running from Monday 19 to Saturday 24 February 2018, with a series of events rethinking the welfare state for the 21st century and the global context. The full programme will be online in January 2018.


We aim to make all LSE events available as a podcast subject to receiving permission from the speaker/s to do this, and subject to no technical problems with the recording of the event. Podcasts are normally available 1-2 working days after the event. Podcasts and videos of past events can be found online

Social Media

Follow LSE public events on Twitter for notification on the availabilility of an event podcast, the posting of transcripts and videos, the announcement of new events and other important event updates. Event updates and other information about what’s happening at LSE can be found on the LSE's Facebook page and for live photos from events and around campus, follow us on Instagram. For live webcasts and archive video of lectures, follow us on YouTube.


This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the CPD Certification Service. Self-Assessment Record forms will be made available for delegates wishing to record further learning and knowledge enhancement for Continuing Personal and Professional Development (CPD) purposes. For delegates who wish to obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance, it is the responsibility of delegates to register their details with a LSE steward at the end of the event and as of 1 September 2014 a certificate will be sent within 28 days of the date of the event attended by the CPD Certification Service.  If a delegate fails to register their details at the event, it will not prove possible to issue a certificate. (For queries relating to CPD Certificates of attendance after a request please phone 0208 840 4383 or email


If you are planning to attend this event and would like details on how to get here and what time to arrive, as well as on accessibility and special requirements, please refer to LSE Events FAQ.  LSE aims to ensure that people have equal access to these public events, but please contact the events organiser as far as possible in advance if you have any access requirements so that arrangements, where possible, can be made. If the event is ticketed, please ensure you get in touch in advance of the ticket release date. Access Guides to all our venues can be viewed online.

WIFI Access

LSE has now introduced wireless for guests and visitors in association with 'The Cloud', also in use at many other locations across the UK. If you are on campus visiting for the day or attending a conference or event, you can connect your device to wireless. See more information and create an account at Join the Cloud.
Visitors from other participating institutions are encouraged to use eduroam. If you are having trouble connecting to eduroam, please contact your home institution for assistance.
The Cloud is only intended for guest and visitor access to wifi. Existing LSE staff and students are encouraged to use eduroam instead.

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check back on this listing on the day of the event.


LSE Events LSEpublicevents

On Thursday Michael O'Sullivan is presenting his new book, 'The Levelling: What's Next After Globalization', on how……

2 hours ago

Reply Retweet Favorite

LSE Events LSEpublicevents

Members of the public, LSE alumni, LSE students and LSE staff can request one ticket via the online ticket request……

22 hours ago

Reply Retweet Favorite

  Sign up for news about events