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Covid & Liability in Italy

Medical Liability for Covid in Italy..

Has the Supreme Court arrived to take care of the doctors?

After a short wait, the key sentence in the summer 2021 of the Supreme Court came, which today clearly outlines the profiles of medical liability, especially for atypical cases without guidelines.

The sentence does not deal directly with the Covid-19 affair but the principles enunciated seem to have a long route on what will be the issue of confrontation in the coming months, the responsibility of the healthcare professional.

In fact, it should be remembered that we can speak of gross negligence , that is, only when the technical gesture provided markedly distant from the patient's conditions;

Likewise, it should be remembered the extent of the divergence between the measure conducted and what was to be expected on the case.

An overall evaluation of many indicators is therefore necessary in order to express the conclusive assessment on the degree of fault, including factors of the opposite sign, which may well coexist in the context of the case examined, not unlike what happens on the subject of concurrence of circumstances.

The identification of the violated precautionary rule is a challenge, in the judgment of responsibility for negligence Consequently, the judgment for the damaging event in this matter is particularly difficult, where there are no undisputed maximums of experience and scientific laws with a reasonable degree of certainty, such as for Covid desease untill now.

Today it is the Supreme Court that deliberates the areas of medical / Liability just on time for the first maxi Covid compensation process started in Rome in conjunction with the investigation conducted by the Bergamo Public Prosecutor's Office for the facts relating to the Covid emergency in winter 2020.

Let's see other salient and innovative points:

The Supreme Court emphasizes an investigation that takes into account the same parameters when it is ascertained what would have been the correct alternative behavior that could be expected from the doctor.

In summary, what should the doctor have done differently in the specific case?

this is the main question, and in few words it is possible to speak of guilt only when there is a notable divergence with respect to official guidelines, and the characteristics of the disease and to the patient's conditions;

for the Supreme Court:

This is no longer a fault in itself considered, but requires that the alleged victim offer proof of the alternative route that had to be followed by the doctor!

The intent of the Supreme Court is clear: offer shelter from witch hunts!

The sentence of the Supreme Court therefore comes at a key moment in which the national health system is called to face the responsibility of its work, it is easy to foresee that this ruling will act as a watershed between liability for foreseeable and known events, and new and atypical ones without accredited guidelines.

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