Post mortem sperm collection & preservation

A recent decision of the Supreme Court of South Australia provides another example of a decision permitting post mortem sperm collection, but for preservation only, pending further order of the court.In Re H, AE [2012] SASC 146, H died from injuries he sustained in a motor vehicle accident. Two days later his wife sought orders …

Forced nutrition of patient suffering anorexia

A recent decision of the England & Wales Court of Protection, Re E (Medical treatment: Anorexia) (Rev 1) [2012] EWHC 1639, resulted in a declaration that the patient E (aged 32 years) lacked capacity to make decisions about life sustaining treatment. Accordingly the court declared it lawful and in her best interests for her to be fed, …

Manslaughter by criminal medical negligence

The High Court has delivered its decision in the appeal brought by Jayant Patel, formerly a surgeon at the Bundaberg Base Hospital in Queensland. The appeal was allowed, with a retrial ordered.The prosecution case as eventually put to the jury was that no competent surgeon would have recommended to the patients the procedures which the appellant …

Preliminary discovery in a medical liability claim

A decision of Levy SC DCJ addressed the appropriateness of preliminary discovery where the proposed defendant and the possible causes of action against that defendant were already identifiable to the plaintiff and to her advisors.In Bain v Bambit & AHPRA [2012] NSWDC 113, the applicant was sucessful in obtaining orders for production of:All documents showing or …

Legal Disputes over Duties to Disclose Treatment Risks

"Legal Disputes over Duties to Disclose Treatment Risks to Patients: A Review of Negligence Claims and Complaints in Australia" is the title of  a new article by Marie Bismark & Ors, appearing online in the PLOS peer reviewed open access journal. The article is also the subject of a report in the Sydney Morning Herald …

GP competence, altered records & false answers to interrogatories

The Medical Tribunal of New South Wales in Health Care Complaints Commission v Cooke [2012] NSWMT 12 considered a range of matters regarding a general practitioner, alleged by the HCCC to constitute unsatisfactory professional conduct. The allegations in relation to one patient included treatment failings against a background of breast cancer, subsequent alteration of records and …

Arranged marriages & medical practitioner obligations

An arranged marriage for a young woman suffering  a very significant degree of learning disability, little language, very little comprehension of anything other than simple matters and requiring assistance with almost all aspects of her daily life came to the attention of a general practitioner. The woman was taken to the doctor for advice as …