Bolam test

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Where clinical negligence is claimed, a test used to determine the standard of care owed by professionals to those whom they serve, e.g. the standards of care provided to patients by doctors. The case Bolam v Friern Hospital Management Committee (1957) 1 WLR 583 established that if a doctor acts in accordance with a responsible body of medical opinion, he or she will not be negligent. Subsequently, this standard of care test was amended – the Bolitho amendment – to include the requirement that the doctor should also have behaved in a way that ‘withstands logical analysis’ regardless of the body of medical opinion. The determination of whether a professional’s actions or omissions withstand logical analysis is the responsibility of the court.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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