With thanks to Enore Panetta for noting a decision yesterday of the Court of Appeal (Western Australia) in South Metropolitan Health Service v Westcott [2016] WASCA 225.

The patient had succeeded in his claim at trial before McCann DCJ (Westcott v Minister for Health [2015] WADC 122), but that outcome was overturned on appeal.

The Court of Appeal:

  • Overturned a finding of breach of duty as the radiology reporting regarding the appendix;
  • Overturned a causation finding as to what the general surgeon would have done, if provided with a different CT imaging report;
  • Overturned a breach finding in relation to a decision as to surgery; and
  • Overturned (obiter) a causation finding as to whether the patient’s complications including pain, incisional hernias and wound infection, were caused by the delay in surgical treatment.


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