Tort Law Essay

Laws are put into place to regulate the behavior of people to benefit society. According to Pozgar, laws are designed to prevent harm to others while protecting the rights of individuals (Pozgar 2010 Pg 175). Without laws the world would be a dangerous place to live. There are four laws that most affect the provider and receiver of care. They are tort law, criminal law, contract law , and trial procedures. The most important one to me that would impact the health care field the most would be tort law.

This is the law that is a civil wrong. It does not consist of a breech of contract, but is committed against a person or property and is left up to the courts to decide what the punishment should be in the form of an action for damages. Tort actions involves a person’s personal as well as their professional life. This is the very reason why it is important for those in the health care field to know and understand their rights and responsibilities.

The objectives of tort law are the preservation of peace (between individuals by providing a substitute for retaliation); culpability (to find fault for wrong doing); deterrence (to discourage the wrongdoer (tort-feasor) from committing future torts); and compensation (to indemnify the injured person(s) of wrong doing. ” (Pozgar 2010 pg 175) Negligence is a form of a tort it could be a civil or a personal wrong. This act is wrong because it could have been avoided if the people or person involved had taken the time to evaluate the situation and done the right thing.

In todays society there is not enough room for error. If you commit a wrong you are held accountable for your actions. No matter the fault it is you who are in the wrong if negligence is the reason for the case. There are too many cases to count that are the result of someone not paying attention to detail or failing to do the right thing because they are being lazy. If you took the oath to be a physician you are obligated by law to take care of patients by any means necessary. To many times patients pay the price with their life or their health for the negligence of incompetent physicians.

I agree with the tort law for those reasons. Malpractice is when a professional person does not take into account the harm that they cause while being careless or reckless with some else’s life. Examples would be performing an abortion in the third trimester, this act is against the law to perform. Another would be failing to order or performing test that could have an affect on the patients’ overall health. The failure to act when a persons life is at stake is a criminal act of negligence. It takes four elements to be present to determine negligence for a person suing to be granted recoverable damages.

First the person must prove that he or she had a patient-physician relationship when the charges were brought forth. To take care of a patient is a duty that corresponds with giving them that care in a timely manner. Physicians must be aware that just because a patient suffered an injury does not always prove that they suffered it from the hands of them. They could be innocent. It is true to say that you are innocent until proven guilty. This is a wise quote to remember being in the medical field. When there are so many people out in the world who just want the money to benefit them wrong or right.

The standard of care is the care given to an individual that is expected at the time of the care. It must be the care that a reasonable person would give under similar circumstances. The reasonably prudent person concept is the imaginary make believe person that is put forth to represent what society considers reasonable behavior. According to Pozgar 2010, “ It would be the measuring stick representing the conduct of the average person in the community under the circumstances facing the defendant at the time of the alleged negligence. ” ( Pozgar 2010 pg 177) Medical Ethnics have a lot to do with medical standards.

There are decisions that are based on the values of others concerned in the health care of loved ones. For instance if a patient is living on life support devices it may be up to the family to decide to take he or she off of the life support system. It is the doctors obligation to adhere by their wishes, but also to be sure that there is nothing else possible to do in order to save the person’s life. “ Many professional groups such as physicians and attorneys hold themselves accountable through a set of ethical guidelines, but public health professionals have no code of ethics.

Perhaps the explanation is that no single public health profession exists, but rather a variety of different disciplines. Indeed, some public health disciplines have their own ethical codes—e. g. , epidemiologists and public health educators. Nevertheless, a code of ethics, or at least a well- articulated values statement, could increase the status of the field and help clarify the distinctive ethical dilemmas faced by public health professionals. Public health professionals work in a field of considerable moral ambiguity where guidance could be instructive. ” ( www. publichealthlaw. net/Reader/ch1/ch1. tm) “A public health code of ethics would have to confront the salient issue of fiduciary responsibility.

To whom do public health professionals owe a duty of loyalty and how can these professionals know what actions are morally acceptable? Physicians, attorneys, and accountants have a fiduciary duty to their clients that informs their moral world. For example, client-centered professions usually adhere to the principle that the professional serves the client, advises the client fully and honestly, takes instructions from the client, and avoids acting against the client’s best interests. (www. publichealthlaw. net/Reader/ch1/ch1. htm) I believe that ethical descisions and law work together sometimes in harmony and then in other instances they work against each other. The difference is that it may be the law to evaluate and treat patients but if the patient is a child and the parents or guardians would rather take the child home without medications how can the doctor be accountable for any wrong doing?

If that same doctor went against the childs parents or guardian wishes in this case he would be found at fault for interfering with the wishes of the parent or guardian. Laws are put into place to regulate the behavior of people to benefit society. According to Pozgar, laws are designed to prevent harm to others while protecting the rights of individuals (Pozgar 2010 Pg 175). Without laws the world would be a dangerous place to live. I hope that I have put into perspective of why tort law best impacts health careprofessionals most directly .