Doctors in the operating theatre at an Abu Dhabi hospital (Christopher Pike / The National)
Doctors in the operating theatre at an Abu Dhabi hospital (Christopher Pike / The National)

When medical errors are not always a crime



Some legal experts suggest that the possibility of sending health professionals to prison for misconduct is contributing to an “overcautious” medical culture that preferences unnecessary tests and overprescription of drugs for fear of later being tried for being insufficiently proactive.

As The National reported yesterday, legal experts said that decriminalising malpractice by doctors will help reduce the cost of medical care in the UAE. Those analysts believe our healthcare system is currently trapped in a cycle of caution, blame and claim. This, in turn, is placing huge financial pressures on the insurance industry.

“Doctors go to jail all over the world, but not for simple malpractice. It has a negative impact if a doctor knows he can go to jail for not testing a patient to indicate a serious illness. You can understand why doctors run tests that may not be necessary, but they are criticised by insurers for doing so,” said Stephen Ballantine, a solicitor in Dubai.

The use of the law in such cases seems counterproductive. Under the current regulations doctors may face immediate suspension while incidents are investigated, which could have serious and long-term consequences for their career, and conviction later.

It always makes sense to pursue doctors who are guilty of gross negligence or other serious errors. However, cases of malpractice could be dealt with by a medical committee rather than by a judge who is unlikely to have medical experience. A medical committee would understand the context and circumstances and could decide if the case warrants a court case.

Prosecuting doctors for making errors is also unlikely to improve patient-safety in the long term. In fact, it could lead to the opposite outcome. Doctors have to make judgement calls all the time, often under intense pressure, based on little more than how the patient appears at the time of consultation. Mistakes can and will, inevitably, be made. Emphasis should be placed on understanding what went wrong rather than on pursuing a conviction that serves neither the medical profession nor the patient.

Another benefit for decriminalising malpractice is that it would help us continue to attract the best doctors to the UAE. Professionals are naturally hesitant to work in any environment if they are placed under constant threat of criminal conviction.

The specs

Engine: 4-litre twin-turbo V8

Transmission: nine-speed

Power: 542bhp

Torque: 700Nm

Price: Dh848,000

On sale: now

EMIRATES'S REVISED A350 DEPLOYMENT SCHEDULE

Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates

Expert input

If you had all the money in the world, what’s the one sneaker you would buy or create?

“There are a few shoes that have ‘grail’ status for me. But the one I have always wanted is the Nike x Patta x Parra Air Max 1 - Cherrywood. To get a pair in my size brand new is would cost me between Dh8,000 and Dh 10,000.” Jack Brett

“If I had all the money, I would approach Nike and ask them to do my own Air Force 1, that’s one of my dreams.” Yaseen Benchouche

“There’s nothing out there yet that I’d pay an insane amount for, but I’d love to create my own shoe with Tinker Hatfield and Jordan.” Joshua Cox

“I think I’d buy a defunct footwear brand; I’d like the challenge of reinterpreting a brand’s history and changing options.” Kris Balerite

 “I’d stir up a creative collaboration with designers Martin Margiela of the mixed patchwork sneakers, and Yohji Yamamoto.” Hussain Moloobhoy

“If I had all the money in the world, I’d live somewhere where I’d never have to wear shoes again.” Raj Malhotra

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Dooda Solutions
Based: Lebanon
Founder: Nada Ghanem
Sector: AgriTech
Total funding: $300,000 in equity-free funding
Number of employees: 11

SERIE A FIXTURES

Friday Sassuolo v Benevento (Kick-off 11.45pm)

Saturday Crotone v Spezia (6pm), Torino v Udinese (9pm), Lazio v Verona (11.45pm)

Sunday Cagliari v Inter Milan (3.30pm), Atalanta v Fiorentina (6pm), Napoli v Sampdoria (6pm), Bologna v Roma (6pm), Genoa v Juventus (9pm), AC Milan v Parma (11.45pm)

The biog

Age: 35

Inspiration: Wife and kids 

Favourite book: Changes all the time but my new favourite is Thinking, Fast and Slow  by Daniel Kahneman

Best Travel Destination: Bora Bora , French Polynesia 

Favourite run: Jabel Hafeet, I also enjoy running the 30km loop in Al Wathba cycling track

The Crown season 5

Stars: Imelda Staunton, Jonathan Pryce, Lesley Manville, Jonny Lee Miller, Dominic West, Elizabeth Debicki, Salim Daw and Khalid Abdalla

Written by: Peter Morgan

Rating: 4/5 stars

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: OneOrder
Started: March 2022
Founders: Tamer Amer and Karim Maurice
Based: Cairo
Number of staff: 82
Investment stage: Series A

Fifa World Cup Qatar 2022

First match: November 20
Final 16 round: December 3 to 6
Quarter-finals: December 9 and 10
Semi-finals: December 13 and 14
Final: December 18

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

TECH SPECS: APPLE IPHONE 14 PLUS

Display: 6.1" Super Retina XDR OLED, 2778 x 1284, 458ppi, HDR, True Tone, P3, 1200 nits

Processor: A15 Bionic, 6-core CPU, 5-core GPU, 16-core Neural Engine 

Memory: 6GB

Capacity: 128/256/512GB

Platform: iOS 16

Main camera: Dual 12MP main (f/1.5) + 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.4); 2x optical, 5x digital; Photonic Engine, Deep Fusion, Smart HDR 4, Portrait Lighting

Main camera video: 4K @ 24/25/3060fps, full-HD @ 25/30/60fps, HD @ 30fps; HD slo-mo @ 120/240fps; night, time lapse, cinematic, action modes; Dolby Vision, 4K HDR

Front camera: 12MP TrueDepth (f/1.9), Photonic Engine, Deep Fusion, Smart HDR 4; Animoji, Memoji; Portrait Lighting

Front camera video: 4K @ 24/25/3060fps, full-HD @ 25/30/60fps, HD slo-mo @ 120fps; night, time lapse, cinematic, action modes; Dolby Vision, 4K HDR

Battery: 4323 mAh, up to 26h video, 20h streaming video, 100h audio; fast charge to 50% in 30m; MagSafe, Qi wireless charging

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.3, NFC (Apple Pay)

Biometrics: Face ID

I/O: Lightning

Cards: Dual eSIM / eSIM + SIM (US models use eSIMs only)

Colours: Blue, midnight, purple, starlight, Product Red

In the box: iPhone 14, USB-C-to-Lightning cable, one Apple sticker

Price: Dh3,799 / Dh4,199 / Dh5,049

RESULT

Al Hilal 4 Persepolis 0
Khribin (31', 54', 89'), Al Shahrani 40'
Red card: Otayf (Al Hilal, 49')

Specs: 2024 McLaren Artura Spider

Engine: 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 and electric motor
Max power: 700hp at 7,500rpm
Max torque: 720Nm at 2,250rpm
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
0-100km/h: 3.0sec
Top speed: 330kph
Price: From Dh1.14 million ($311,000)
On sale: Now

'Falling for Christmas'

Director: Janeen Damian

Stars: Lindsay Lohan, Chord Overstreet, Jack Wagner, Aliana Lohan

Rating: 1/5