AN APPRAISAL OF INSTITUTIONAL AND LEGAL FRAMEWORK FOR MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE UNDER NIGERIA LAW

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Introduction

The occurrence of professional medical negligence or malpractice has increased, necessitating the attention of the legal system in order to protect patients and ensure that physicians are held accountable for any harm caused to patients by their carelessness. Furthermore, medical practitioners who have caused the deaths of a large number of patients while doing their professional duties must be warned. People’s trust in the medical community would be restored as a result. Patients are increasingly in need of protection from doctors who see their primary professional calling as a method of profit rather than saving lives.
Patient safety isn’t a new concern. In advanced countries, legislation and an increasing reliance on the courts ensure that negligent medical practitioners are held accountable for their conduct. So, how do we determine how much medical decision-making should be subject to legal oversight and control? Those on the extreme right believe that the medical community should be trusted to govern themselves and determine what is acceptable behavior. This school of thought contends that relying on the law to resolve doctors’ ethical quandaries is overly harsh. The individual conscience is guided by personal experience, the medical ethics code, and the need to confront and address the day-to-day ethnic challenges of medical practice. Medical practitioners would also face a resource scarcity as a result of Nigeria’s current economic woes, as well as other factors that could impede good medical practice. The opposing, and equally widespread, opinion claims that doctors should not be the exclusive arbiters of the doctor-patient relationship.
Medical practitioners, according to this idea, should not be allowed to make life-or-death decisions. This disrespect for public concern is terrible. The law exists to protect people’s rights and to ensure that some fundamental societal values are upheld. As a result, the legal examination of the medical field, as well as other professions, has increased. 1 Key terminology such as medical practitioner, negligence law, and medical negligence must be thoroughly taught at the outset.

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Contents