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Medical Law ConcentrateLaw Revision and Study Guide

Medical Law Concentrate: Law Revision and Study Guide (4th edn)

Jo Samanta and Ash Samanta
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date: 01 April 2023

p. 162. Medical negligencelocked

p. 162. Medical negligencelocked

  • Jo SamantaJo SamantaEmeritus Professor of Law, De Montfort University
  •  and Ash SamantaAsh SamantaEmeritus Consultant Physician and Rheumatologist, University Hospitals of Leicester, and Part-Time Lecturer in Law, De Montfort University


This chapter deals with medical negligence and how claims can be brought in the tort of negligence via three requirements: the defendant owed the claimant a duty of care; the defendant’s performance fell below the standard expected; and that the claimant’s injury was caused by the breach of duty. The duty of care in doctor–patient relationships and in ‘good Samaritan’ situations is considered. The Bolam test is discussed, which is used to judge the standard of care expected from doctors (subject to the Bolitho principle), as well as tests to establish causation, such as the ‘but for’ test. Relevant cases are cited, where appropriate. Criminal negligence is also discussed.

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