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Does signing a pre-surgery indemnity make me legally powerless if something goes wrong?
The law of Singapore and sensible morality do not allow any person or corporation to evade or limit their responsibility for any personal injury or physical harm caused by negligence or fault on their part.
In matters that may involve medical negligence, the patient will have to provide evidence to show that his doctor had been negligent. A doctor has a legal duty to care for his patients. To show that he has been negligent, the patient must prove to the court that the doctor had breached this duty of care. The duty of care between a doctor and his patient is defined by the patient’s reliance on the doctor’s expertise and skill.
To obtain this evidence, the patient would have to consult an independent, expert doctor to say that the alleged offending doctor had performed his duties below the reasonable standard required of a doctor skilled in that particular area of practice.
Doctors, like other professionals, don’t usually say nasty things of their brethren, although there has been a number of local cases in which this has happened.
Don’t worry, if you are able to establish that something went wrong as a result of a hospital or medical service provider’s failure to provide a standard of care that the law requires of them, the law will not release them from their liability.
In the event that a patient dies due to negligence on the part of a medical service provider, the patient’s cause of action passes on to his estate (eg, surviving loved ones), who may bring a claim on his behalf.