(LAWA-4018) - 2 UNITS

This course focuses on medical malpractice litigation as a mechanism for regulating health care quality. Students will delve into the fundamental issues surrounding medical negligence, such as the physician-patient relationship, standard of care, informed consent, institutional and agency liability, peer review, reliance on allied health professionals and alternative medicine, liability of drug and device manufacturers, and the role of insurers. Students will learn about the substantive and procedural aspects of each stage of a malpractice action, such as determining whether to bring a malpractice action, qualifying or challenging expert and scientific evidence, proving causation and damages, defending malpractice claims, and allocating liability among different providers. Because malpractice is governed by state common and statutory law, many of the cases will be drawn from California law. The course will also highlight existing and proposed tort reforms, and students will be encouraged to think critically about the impact of malpractice litigation on quality, access, and cost of health care. This is a paper course.

Satisfies Writing Requirement