The daily work of clinicians is subjected to scrutiny more than ever before. Clinical Practice and the Law – a legal primer for clinicians (Eyre, Giles. 2018 www.prosols.uk.com) addresses the lack of information clinicians are provided with as to how the law and the legal system affect their work. It describes how the legal (and therefore judicial) mind approaches and weighs up evidence. It explains the need for effective communication and good quality and explanatory medical notes and records and shows how to produce them in many different situations. It also describes the necessary ingredients of a witness statement.
This book also looks in a practical manner at the legal principles surrounding patient confidentiality, inquiries by (and providing assistance to) the police, the treatment of prisoners and arrested individuals, consenting of patients, mental capacity and the emergency detention of patients. The difference between factual and expert evidence is explained and guidance given as to the giving of forensic expert evidence.
Finally, the book considers and explains the different processes which may be activated should an adverse event, an investigation or a complaint occur, from whistleblowing and the duty of candour, through investigations. inspections and inquests to fitness to practise proceedings, being sued for damages and prosecuted for criminal offences.
“It is Giles Eyre’s direct experience in the practice of these areas of the law, and his gift for clear and uncomplicated exposition, which makes this book so useful. It vitally fills a gap for clinicians. Those in established clinical practice would do well to consult it as a matter of course, and it deserves to become a basis for study for those in training.” James Badenoch Q.C.