Title

Medical Malpractice Litigation: Do the British Have a Better Remedy?

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1985

ISSN

0098-8588

Publisher

American Society of Law, Medicine & Ethics

Language

en-US

Abstract

Medical malpractice claims are filed nearly ten times more frequently in America than they are in Great Britain. British patients generally adopt a less adversarial stance toward medical malpractice than do American patients. This Article examines the British malpractice system, as compared with the American system, and explores the differences between the two, in terms of costs and fees, liability rules, statutory provisions, and judicial attitudes toward malpractice litigation. The Article also discusses British social and institutional factors, such as the “taint” of litigation and the National Health Service, and evaluates how these factors affect British malpractice litigation. The Article presents the alternative forums available to British patients in seeking satisfaction for their medical service complaints. The Article concludes with an evaluation of how these factors achieve the three societal objectives of malpractice litigation: reparation, emotional vindication and deterrence.

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