Law in Relation to Medical Men Medical Ethics | Anatomy2Medicine
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Law in Relation to Medical Men Medical Ethics

Medical Ethics and Law

    • Law which is laid down by the Judges by their judgements is Common law
    • The law of torts is created by Courts of law(MCQ)
    • Cr.P.C. is main law which deals with procedures to be followed in a criminal case

 

  • Consumer redressal forum

 

      • A district consumer redressal forum can entertain claims for compensation up to maximum of Rs. 20 lakh (MCQ)
      • The  National  Consumer Redressal Commission can entertain claims for compensation only when they are of more than Rs. 1 crore
    • Medical Council of India
      • The President and Vice President of the Council are elected from amongst the members of the Council

 

  • Executive Committee of the Medical Council of India comprises of the President, Vice President and 7-10 other members

 

      • The   responsibility   of maintaining standards of medical education in India is that of Medical Council of India
      • Functions of State Medical Councils
        • Issue of warning notices

 

  • Maintenance of Medical Register

 

        • Disciplinary Control of Medical Profession
        • Maintenance of Standards of Medical education
    • A privileges (rights) of a Registered Medical Practitioner
      • Right to add title, description etc. to his name
      • Possessing and supplying dangerous drugs to his patients
      • Recovery of fees from his patient

 

  • Right to dispense medicines
  • Right to choose a patient (MCQ)

 

        • the doctor does not have an unconditional right.,according to latest Supreme Court verdicts, a doctor must treat a patient in emergency. He does not have a right to choose a patient in such cases.
    • Examples of privileged communication(A very High yield MCQ)
    • Doctor is appointed on the panel of the Life Insurance Corporation. He reveals the information that the person taking the policy is suffering from some life threatening disorder
    • Patient sues the doctor for not treating him properly. During the trial, the doctor reveals to the court that the patient is suffering from an incurable disorder
    • A teenager suffering from suicidal tendencies. The doctor reveals this condition to his parents
    • Professional death sentence can be passed by State Medical Council
    • Civil wrong is known as “tort”.(MCQ)
      • e.g applying the plaster so tightly that gangrene sets up in foot.

 

  • Mutatis mutandis  (MCQ)

 

    • Means with the necessary changes having been carried out

 

  • It is generally used in the context of making allowances for differences in small, inessential details when comparing cases that are substantially the same.

 

  • What is said of the Tamilnadu State PG Medical entrance regulations  in a

judgement here is to be taken also to apply mutatis mutandis, to the Karnataka and the Rajastan State PG Medical entrance

    • Paripassu  (MCQ)
      • means “with equal step” (par, equal; passus, step).
      • It means “at an equal rate of progress“.
      • In legal context it means “equitably” or “without unfair preference“.
      • Examples:
        • This term is also often used in the lending area and in bankruptcy proceedings where creditors are said to be paid pari passu, or each creditor is paid pro rata in accordance with the amount of his claim
    • Ultra vires (MCQ)
      • It means “beyond the legal power or authority of a person or official or body etc” or”beyond the scope or in excess of legal power or authority” such as “an ultra vires contract”.
      • This phrase is used frequently in relation to acts or enactments by corporations in excess of their chartered or statutory rights. The opposite is intra vires.

 

  • Res ipsa loquitur (MCQ)

 

    • res ipsa loquitur (Latin for “the thing itself speaks”) is a doctrine that states that the elements of duty of care and breach can sometimes be inferred from the very nature of an accident or other outcome, even without direct evidence of how any defendant behaved
    • Example of res ipsa loquitur is: (MCQ)
      • Death due to anesthesia
      • Operating a patient without a post graduate degree in surgery
      • Tetanus infection to an indoor patient
      • a swab or instrument found on X-ray to be in the abdominal cavity
      • amputation of the wrong limb.
    • Respondent superior  (MCQ)
      • means “Let the superior reply”.
      • Examples
        • An intern is only liable to conduct surgeries and prescribe drugs under the supervision of a full fledged doctor, and he can take this defence.
        • If a dog bites a man and the man files a case against the owner of the dog, the owner of the dog can not say, “go and hang my dog“. The sufferer has a right to say, “let the superior (in this case-owner) reply.”

 

  • Contributory negligence (MCQ)

 

      • If the damage to the patient has been caused where both doctor and the patient have been negligent at the same time
      • Contributory negligence is a valid defence to the doctor in Civil negligence

 

  • Vicarious liability (MCQ)

 

      • Liability for Failure to Supervise Adequately
      • secondary liability that arises under the common law doctrine of agency – respondeat superior – the responsibility of the superior for the acts of their subordinate,

 

  • Novus actus interveniens (MCQ)

 

      • Novus actus interveniens is a Latin term which means a new intervening act.
      • It is an act or event that breaks the causal connection between a wrong or crime committed by the defendant and subsequent happenings. The new event relieves the defendant from responsibility for the happenings

 

  • Professional misconduct  (MCQ)

 

      • A conduct on the part of a medical practitioner during the practice of his pro fession, which would be reasonably regarded as disgraceful or dishonourable by his professional colleagues of good repute and competency

 

  • The last clear chance doctrine

 

      • The “last clear chance doctrine” is an important limitation to the doctrine of contributory negligence.

 

  • Here if it is shown that the defendant (doctor in this case) had a “Last Clear Chance” to avert the damage caused to the patient, and he did not avail of this chance, the doctor loses his defence of contributory negligence
  • Doctrine of avoidable consequences“ or the “avoidable consequences rule (MCQ)
  • ‘Where one party to a contract (doctor in the above case) commits a breach of contract, the other party (the patient) is required by the “avoidable consequences” rule of damages to make all reasonable efforts to minimize the loss he sustains as a result of the breach, and he (patient) can charge the party in default (doctor) with such damages  only as, with reasonable endeavors and expense and without risk of additional substantial loss or injury, he could not prevent.’
  • Here the patient could have avoided the consequences by not being negligent. But he did not do so. The doctor gets the benefit here.
  • Therapeutic misadventure (MCQ)

 

      • Unexpected complications of medical procedures is termed as Therapeutic Misadventure

 

  • Infamous conduct (MCQ)

 

      • Repeated advertisements in newspapers by a medical practitioner is an example of Infamous conduct

 

  • Euthanasia (MCQ)
  • Voluntary euthanasia is when a person is suffering greatly and has given his consent for death.

 

      • Non- voluntary euthanasia refers to a situation where the person is incapable of making his wish known (as in comatosed persons, mentally retarded individuals and severely defective infants).
        • Example : If the life support systems of a severely defective infant is turned off to put an end to his life, this would be called Non-voluntary euthanasia
      • In Indian law, no  forms of euthanasia is allowed

 

  • Consent
  • Consent is legally defined in Indian Contract Act

 

      • Two or more person are said to consent when they agree upon the same thing in the same sense.
      • Consent is defined in section 13

 

  • Implied consent (MCQ)

 

        • Example : A 24-year-old young female conies to a male gynaecologist for pelvic exami nation.
      • MCQs on Consent based scenarios
        • If an unconscious patient needs to be operated upon immediately to save his life, and relatives are not traceable for taking consent, he should operate without consent
        • If a doctor performs an emergency sur gery in an unconscious patient, without consent from the relatives because they were not available, he gets no protection because although he may be morally right, he has committed a legal wrong

 

  • Doctrine of “in loco parentis” (MCQ)
  • In loco parentis” is a Latin phrase, which when translated in English means “In place of a parent”.
  • In Emergency surgery, the person immediately in-charge of the minor such as a teacher or warden can give consent

 

      • Under section 53 Cr.P.C, (MCQ)

 

  • An arrested person can be examined by a medical practitioner without consent

 

        • The person must be arrested on a charge of committing an offence
        • requesting police officer should not be below the rank of sub-inspector or any person acting in good faith in his aid and under his direction
        • examination must be such as is reasonably necessary in order to ascertain the facts which may afford useful evidence
        • reasonable force to do such examination may be applied.
        • If a doctor is examining a female under section 53 Cr.P.C, the doctor should either be a female, or if male, he should be under the supervision of a female doctor
        • It is legal to use Red cross emblem for trade or business only by medical men of the armed forces

 

  • Declarations in Forensic medicine – A very high yield MCQ
  • Declaration of Geneva, 1948
  • It is a modernized version of Hippocratic oath

 

        • It is a declaration of a physician’s dedication to the humanitarian goals of medicine, a declaration that was especially important in view of the medical crimes which had just been committed in Nazi Germany
        • Declaration of Tokyo, 1975 (MCQ)
          • Done by World Medical Association adopted guidelines for medical doctors regarding torture and other cruel treatment in relation to detention and imprisonment in war

 

  • International Code of Medical Ethics

 

          • It prescribes duties of physicians in general, duties of physicians to the sick and duties of physicians to each other

 

  • Declaration of Helsinki (1964) (MCQ)

 

          • prescribe ethical principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects

 

  • Declaration  of Sydney (1968)

 

      • It is a statement on when to pronounce death.

 

        • It was decided that ECG was the most helpful diagnostic aid in the diagnosis of death

 

  • Declaration of Oslo (1970 )

 

        • abortion should be performed only as a therapeutic measure. However Indian parliament passed MTP Act only next year (1971), where MTP was allowed on virtually every case (The Act came into force on April 1, 1972
    • Sections of Cr.P.C. related to medical negligence
      • IPC Sections related to medical negligence  (MCQ)
        • Section 304A I.P.C – causing death by rash and negligent act
        • Section 351 I.P.C. – If a doctor examines a patient without his or her consent
        • Section 312 I.P.C. – causing miscarriage intentionally.

 

 

  • 304 A l.P.C (MCQ)

 

          • If death has occurred due to medical negligence of a doctor, he may be charged under304 A l.P.C section.
          • But if death has not occurred (e.g. if a doctor has amputated a wrong leg due to negligence) he may be charged under sections 336, 337 and 338 of l.P.C.

 

  • S 336.  (MCQ)

 

          • Act endangering life or personal safety of others
          • shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three months, or with fine which may extend to two hundred and fifty rupees, or with both.
          • Example:
            • Doctor conducts a delivery under influence of alcohol. Delivery occurs safely. The doctor is yet liable to be charged under this section, because he was rash and negligent in attending a patient under influence of alcohol.

 

  • S 337.  (MCQ)

 

        • Causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others:
        • punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees, or with both.
        • Example:
          • Doctor does not test for penicillin sensitivity .Gives injection .Patient suffers from anaphylaxis,saved by doctor,patient does not die,the doctor is still liable to be charged under this section, because the patient suffered from hurt.
      • S 338.
        • Causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others
        • punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.