Why proper understanding of confidence intervals and statistical significance is important

James C Hurley
Med J Aust 2021; 215 (4): . || doi: 10.5694/mja2.51194
Published online: 16 August 2021

To the Editor: The explanation of inference from confidence intervals by Hemming and Taljaard is interesting but unfortunately incorrect.1 The authors may have fallen for the confidence interval variation of the P value fallacy — the mistaken idea that the P value (or confidence interval) can capture both the long term outcomes of an experiment, as commonly reflected in the phrase “a trend to significance (P = 0.06)”, and the evidential meaning of a single result.2

  • James C Hurley1,2

  • 1 Ballarat Health Services, Ballarat, VIC
  • 2 University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC


Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.


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