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Professional And Clinical Negligence Notes

GDL Law Notes > GDL Tort Law Notes

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A more recent version of these Professional And Clinical Negligence notes – written by Cambridge/Bpp/College Of Law students – is available here.

The following is a more accessble 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:

Tort: Professional/Clinical Negligence 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: PS75k 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]).

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