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The Impact of the Criminal Process on Health Care Ethics and Practice

Project: Non-funded ProjectProjects

1/01/0831/07/11

The research project (funded by the AHRC) will offer a comprehensive analysis of the role of the criminal justice system in regulating health care practice and ethics in the UK. Whilst the courts have been involved in questions of medical accountability and ethics for some time, such questions of medical malpractice are increasingly coming before the criminal courts in the United Kingdom. The project will chart this growing trend to resort to the criminal process, and examine whether putting more health professionals (and patients) in the dock results in sounder ethics or better health care. We will explore demands for retributive justice, and analyse how it is that fundamental questions about the ethics of abortion, euthanasia and patient behaviour often fall to be determined by the judiciary rather than elected lawmakers. We intend that the project will result in a diverse range of publications.

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