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Quintessence Int. 2017;48(10):835-840. doi: 10.3290/j.qi.a39106.

Medical malpractice: An introduction for the dental practitioner.


With the plethora of medical malpractice claims, health care providers are forced to deal not only with medical matters but also with legal issues. Thus, unfortunately, every time health care providers give a medical treatment, they should be aware of the legal implications of their act. Most medical malpractice cases will be resolved in civil law and will have financial implications, but in extreme cases (such as causing death by negligence) criminal procedure may also be conducted, meaning criminal sanctions (imprisonment or fine). This paper is intended to provide dental practitioners with an introduction to basic legal knowledge and concepts regarding medical malpractice law along with a short legal overview regarding the liability regime in different countries. The paper focuses on tort law and the meaning of "negligence," reviewing the main different liability regimes that exist and the legal elements that must be proven in each regime in order to receive compensation. In an era of increase in medical malpractice law suits, it is essential that physicians and dental professionals recognize the basic legal concepts of medical malpractice.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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