The Law of Medical Negligence will closely delve into medical negligence by examining the principal difficulties associated with the common law cause of action. The module will begin with a detailed consideration of the conundrums associated with proving a duty of care (whether to a patient or to a non-patient), and will then proceed onwards through breach, causation, remoteness of damage, and finally to the defences available to a culpable healthcare professional. The course will also have regard to the variety of remedies which may be (or become) available in medical negligence claims.
The aims of the course are three-fold: (1), first and principally, to deepen subject knowledge, particularly the understanding and appreciation of recent developments of legal doctrine in medical negligence; (2) to engender a critical appreciation of the dynamic nature of the law of medical negligence, and to enhance the ability to anticipate the manner in which the law may and should develop in the future; and (3) to understand and appreciate the cross-jurisdictional fertilisation of medical negligence jurisprudence. A comparative perspective will be adopted, in many of the topics, so as to enable a wider appraisal of the ways in which similar problems arising from medical negligence claims have been dealt with across different jurisdictions.