1. The present system of resolving Medical Negligence disputes
Medical negligence claims in India are generally resolved through Consumer Protection Act and Civil – tort litigation based on the provisions of Consumer Protection Act 1986. In western countries, one of the surveys in Connecticut showed that 63% of the population surveyed favored having medical malpractice disputes resolved by a third-party rather than a jury. The legal system’s approach to resolving medical negligence disputes often prevents efforts to improve patient safety and reduce medical error. Many providers order tests and procedures to avoid being second-guessed and sued. The legal process is adversarial, costly, time consuming and slow. Our research shows, even under Consumer Protection Act, the legal process is very slow and consumes about 6 to 8 years minimum time span for any medical negligence case to be decided in Indian Legal System.
2. Unique problems in Medical Negligence cases
Medical negligence claims are generally resolved through Consumer Protection Act and based on the provisions of Consumer Protection Act 1986. The complainant i.e. patient needs to prove the doctor negligent with the help of experts in the field and medical literature. It is a difficult task to collect evidence as well as seek the opinion of medical experts. Apart from delay in the litigation process, it has become costly also.
3. Mediation of Medical Negligence disputes: The preferred alternative
Mediation is the effective method of dealing with the medical negligence disputes. It provides dispute resolution without creating enmity between the two parties. It is of two types, mandatory and voluntary. Mandatory mediation may be by contract between two parties or by court order.
4. Arbitration of Medical Malpractice disputes
Arbitration is the effective method of dealing with the medical negligence disputes. It involves agreement between the hospital and patient at the time of admission in the hospital for the treatment, regarding appointment of arbitrators in case of any medico legal dispute.
5. Who should the mediators and Arbitrators be?
The mediators and the arbitrators can be one or the team from the following
- Reputed Doctor from the Professional association
- Retired Judge
- Senor advocate
- Any person of high repute
6. Services by CIILM
The CIILM offers the services of mediation and the arbitration, for which has a team of senior respected doctors, advocates and retired judges who can effective and impartially mediate and solve the disputes.
Thus with the services from CIILM, the dispute resolution is faster, cost effective and impartial balancing the patient interests and doctor’s liability.