• We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Logo of bmjBMJ helping doctors make better decisionsSearch bmj.comLatest content
BMJ. Feb 5, 2000; 320(7231): 336.
PMCID: PMC1127140

Patients, but not doctors, like mediation for settling claims

Clare Dyer, legal correspondent

Mediation may provide better redress for victims of medical negligence than pursuing claims through litigation, according to a three year study carried out for the Department of Health in England.

But the NHS and claimants' lawyers will need to be more willing to refer cases for mediation if the benefits are to be reaped.

The pilot study in two NHS regions—Anglia and Oxford, and Northern and Yorkshire—was launched in 1995 with the aim of analysing up to 40 mediations over two years. But the low referral rate meant the study had to be extended for a third year, and only 12 cases were completed by the end.

However, the research team, led by Linda Mulcahy, reader in law at Birkbeck College, University of London, also identified 44 “near miss” cases in which mediation had been suggested to the opposing side, 14 of which were ongoing referrals at the close of the scheme.

The study also included an analysis of nearly 4000 claims handled by traditional methods. The researchers interviewed claimants whose claims were settled in the standard way, parties who took part in the mediations, solicitors specialising in clinical negligence, and claims managers. Doctors who had been involved in a claim were also surveyed, but the response rate was only 14%.

Of all the groups involved in mediation, doctors were the least satisfied with the process. Doctors are more exposed through mediation than through traditional litigation.

Full story in News Extra at www.bmj.com

Articles from BMJ : British Medical Journal are provided here courtesy of BMJ Group
PubReader format: click here to try


Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...


Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...