Document Type

Article

Department

Emergency Medicine (East Africa)

Abstract

Most states in the USA have ‘Good Samaritan’ laws that oblige doctors to stop and render emergency treatment under certain circumstances, without incurring legal liability even if they are negligent. Whether doctors are legally obliged to stop and render assistance at road accidents in most countries across the world remains controversial. In 1978, the South African Medical and Dental Council ruled that ‘in cases of emergency a practitioner is obliged to render assistance in all circumstances’. It has therefore been said that ‘where persons are in a situation where their life or health will be seriously endangered unless they receive immediate medical treatment, a practitioner who is available may not ethically refuse to attend such patients unless there are compelling circumstances that prevent the doctor from acting’.

Publication

African Journal of Emergency Medicine

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