Liability of physicans and dentists – key issues

Original Article, Pol J Public Health 2016;126(4): 155-160

Michał Zalewski1, Kamila Fux-Zalewska2

1 Department of Civil Law, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, Poland
2 Chair and Department of Pedodontics, Medical University in Lublin, Poland

DOI: 10.1515/pjph-2016-0032

Abstract

Physicians and dentists can be held liable for commissions and omissions relating to the exercise of medical activity. Medical liability involves the obligation to redress the damage (harm) which occurred as a result of acts or omissions committed in the course of medical activity. Whether liability will arise depends on the occurrence of damage which stands in an adequate causal relationship to the event provided for in applicable regulations. This event may be non-performance or improper performance of a contract for the provision of medical services (contractual liability) or unlawful and culpable conduct in the exercise of medical action taken toward the patient who is not bound to the doctor by a legal relationship (tort liability). When a physician or a dentist is assigned a liability, he/she is obliged to redress the pecuniary damage and compensate for the non-pecuniary injury (wrong) suffered by the injured party.

Keywords

physicians, dentists, malpractice, liability, damage, indemnity, compensation.

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