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GDL Law Notes GDL Tort Law Notes

Professional And Clinical Negligence Notes

Updated Professional And Clinical Negligence Notes

GDL Tort Law Notes

GDL Tort Law

Approximately 591 pages

A collection of the best GDL notes the director of Oxbridge Notes (an Oxford law graduate) could find after combing through applications from top students and carefully evaluating each on accuracy, formatting, logical structure, spelling/grammar, conciseness and "wow-factor". In short these are what we believe to be the strongest set of GDL notes available in the UK this year. This collection of GDL notes is fully updated for recent exams, also making them the most up-to-date GDL study materials ...

The following is a more accessible plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our GDL Tort Law Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

  • Duty

    - Professionals: duty to client (White v Jones: solicitor liable for not amending will).

    - Medical profession: duty to patients (R v Bateman; Cassidy v MOH: [Ld Denning] once responsibility assumed, no need for contract/reward.)

    • emergency: only when responsibility assumed (Barnett v K&C HMC).

    • duty to act in best interests of patient (Re F (Mental Patient: Sterilisation): no consent needed).

    • duty to write prescriptions clearly (Prendergast v Sam & Dee Ltd: dr. + pharmacist jointly liable).

    • limitations:

      • c. must be patient (Kapfunde v Abbey National: not liable for pre-job assessment w/out examination).

      • no common law duty to prevent patient harming self/others (Clunis v Camden HA: mental patient stabbed passer-by HA not liable.) – but consider statute (Mental Health Act 1983).

      • no duty to 3rd parties (Goodwill v British Pregnancy Advisory Service: no duty to vasectomy partner).

      • wrongful life: only pregnancy, NOT raising child recoverable (McFarlane v Tayside Health Board).

    - Hospitals/HA: duty to provide services of medical professionals with sufficient skill.

    • Wilsher v Essex AHA; Kent v Griffiths obiter – hospitals liable for failure to provide adequate care.

    • Bull v Devon AHA: hospital organised care badly, 2nd twin born disabled HA liable.

    • Johnstone v Bloomsbury AHA: junior dr. overworked HA liable.

    - Policy/resource allocation – no absolute duty to provide all treatments (R v Cambridge HA ex p Child B: 75k procedure with small chance of success refused not liable) – policy: unreasonable, floodgates, defensive practices etc.

    • but decision must be reasonable (Rogers v Swindon NHS Trust).

Standard of Care + Breach

- Standard: ordinary skilled man exercising + professing to have special skills (Bolam v Friern HMC, [McNair J]).

  • inexperience irrelevant (Nettleship v Weston; Wilsher v Essex AHA: jr. dr. mistook vein for artery).

    • but: senior may be liable for improper supervision (WIlsher v Essex; Bull v Devon AHA).

  • surgeon: reasonably competent surgeon (Ashcroft v Mersey RHA).

  • alt. medicine: reasonably competent practitioner (Shakoor v Situ).


- Test: action acceptable to reasonable body of professional opinion (Bolam v Friern HMC).

  • differing opinions valid (Maynard v W Midlands HA, [Ld Scarman]: court should not decide).

  • can be minority (De Freitas v O’Brien & Connolly: 11/1000 consultants) – esp. for specialism.

  • but: court can deem body unreasonable if no logical basis (Bolitho v City HA, [Ld Browne-Wilkinson]: rare).

    • e.g. Marriott v W Midlands HA: GP advised patient with head injury + headache to stay home.

    • e.g. AB v Leeds Teaching Hospital NHS Trust: taking organs from dead children w/o consent.

    • e.g. Lybert v Warrington HA: warning about possibility of sterilisation insufficient (despite standard).

  • guidelines: also considered (Thompson v James: GP failed to observe DoH guidelines re: advocating MMR vaccine to parents liable) – now more codification (NICE etc. greater emphasis on standard practice).

  • - Level of info. given on risks – apply Bolam (Sidaway v Bethlem Royal Hospital Governors).

    • Sidaway v Bethlem Royal Hospital Governors: dr. did not advise of 1% risk of spine damage from back op not liable (RBOP would not have warned).

      • but not unlimited discretion: [Ld Bridge] obiter: 10% risk should be disclosed.

    • BUT: if patient asks – full disclosure required (Chester v Afshar: small risk of nerve damage in spine op).

    • can take a/c of patient’s emotional state (Pearce v United Bristol Healthcare NHS Trust: c. in labour + emotional, d. did not give all options not liable).

    - Error of judgment: not negligent if might be made by man...

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