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Clinical Negligence Notes

LPC Law Notes > Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Notes

This is an extract of our Clinical Negligence document, which we sell as part of our Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Notes collection written by the top tier of Cambridge And Oxilp And College Of Law students.

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Summary of facts of medical treatment and consequences - condition and prognosis Discussions for first interview: o Advantages/disadvantages of issuing proceedings for negligence o Whether client wishes to continue with the existing doctor/patient relationship o How to complain about the service received to the hospital concerned o How to complain about possible professional misconduct of the clinicians concerned Evidence which should be obtained o Medical notes
? Investigate the initial consultation - GP records o Expert evidence
? Causation of current deformity
? Current condition - prognosis
? Liability - whether trust was in breach of its duty here o Documents relating to quantum o Whether the treatment given would be o Proof of loss of earnings o Transport costs o Witness statements from both GPs and NHS Trust o Witness statement from expert GP o Witness statement from claimant o NHS Complaints Procedure - evidence he/she undertook this o Hospital protocols and other healthcare guidance
? Existing protocols that exist for this type of injury?

Explain the relevant law and evidence on liability and causation in clinical negligence claims Who will be the parties to the litigation?Who the defendant is depends on who provides the treatment NHS trusts and health authorities o NHS trust hospital is responsible for the acts and omissions of its staff - Cassidy v Ministry of Health (1951) - each NHS trust is a separate legal entity


A hospital authority could not escape liability by reference to its employees if there was negligence during a course of treatment.
? A hospital authority was liable for the negligence of professional medical staff employed by the authority under contracts for services as well as contracts of service.
? The authority owed a duty of care to give proper treatment for which it remained liable even if it delegated the performance of that treatment. o So the defendant is trust/health authorities and NOT the employee GPs - backed by defence bodies (do not receive backing from the government) o MDU - Medical Defence Union o MPS - Medical Protection Society Private doctors - own defence body Private hospitals - backed by insurance Other possible defendants e.g. alternative health practitioners

What is the duty of care and has there been any breach of duty?-Established duty of care between medical practitioner and patient Duty to take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which would cause reasonably foreseeable loss and damage Examples of duties owed by medical professionals o To properly assess the patient's condition o To be readily accessible to meet the patient's need o To keep the client informed o To prescribe and administer drugs o To avoid omissions o To regularly assess progress o Make enquiries - e.g. nature of complaint, medical history o Referral to another professional if necessary o Keep good notes and inform patient o Prepare for any operation Standard of care o The standard is that of the ordinary skilled doctor skilled in that particular art o If a doctor holds himself as performing a skilled practice, he is assessed by reference to that skill - Wilsher v Essex Challenges o Different schools of thought o Difficult illness o Understanding clinician's actions o Bolan v Friern Hospital [1957] - any breach of duty is judged by the standard of a reasonable body of medical opinion
? Mcnair J - Bolam test (the ratio):?Acted in accordance with practice accepted as proper? 10% rule By responsible body of medical people?
Skilled in that particular art?

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