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Obstetrics and Gynaecology Forum

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The rising cost of litigation; a threat to private obstetric care?

Graham R Howarth

Abstract


In the absence of effective intervention indemnity will become unaffordable to obstetricians. Unindemnified obstetricians would be poorly advised to continue practising; a case could not only leave them financially ruined but a deserving patient may be inadequately compensated. As indemnity becomes more expensive there will be a progressive decrease in the number of practitioners who can afford it and a stage will be reached when it is unaffordable. Private patients will however continue to fall pregnant and require delivering. As no private facilities are available they will be forced across to the state sector not only increasing the workload of busy state facilities but also increasing the state’s litigation risk and medico-legal liability burden.

Keywords: Litigation; Obstetrics; Prevention

Obstetrics & Gynaecology Forum • October 2013



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