Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

The role of medical expert witnesses: the Goudge Inquiry

Date:
December 21, 2009
Source:
Canadian Medical Association Journal
Summary:
The role of a medical expert witness needs to be strictly defined and carefully controlled during legal proceedings and physicians need to be aware of their role, states an analysis of the Goudge Inquiry into pediatric forensic pathology.

The role of a medical expert witness needs to be strictly defined and carefully controlled during legal proceedings and physicians need to be aware of their role, states an analysis of the Goudge Inquiry into pediatric forensic pathology published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

The Inquiry into Pediatric Forensic Pathology by Justice Stephen Goudge looked into the flawed expert testimony of Ontario pathologist Dr. Charles Smith which has been linked to several miscarriages of justice, including the wrongful conviction of Sherry Sherret-Robinson that was overturned by the Ontario Court of Appeal in December 2009.

"Several commentators have suggested that, when the adversarial system is working as it should, our courts are a robust forum for highlighting matters of scientific controversy," write the authors. "Goudge's report is a tragic narrative of the mischief that results when the system is not functioning effectively."

In the CMAJ analysis, the Honourable Frank Iacobucci and coauthor Graeme Hamilton describe 4 reasons to carefully control the use of expert witnesses, a 4-part test for determining legal admissibility of expert evidence and summarize Justice Goudge's concerns over how pathologists interact with the Canadian legal system. They also include recommendations from the Goudge Inquiry on the role of the expert medical witness.

They conclude that for the legal system to function well, each participant must do their part. "Expert witnesses must give fair, objective and impartial testimony, irrespective of whether they have been retained by a party or appointed by the court. They must also be sensitive to the vulnerabilities of the system and do their utmost to present evidence in a manner than ensures its intelligibility."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Canadian Medical Association Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Canadian Medical Association Journal. "The role of medical expert witnesses: the Goudge Inquiry." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 December 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091221123317.htm>.
Canadian Medical Association Journal. (2009, December 21). The role of medical expert witnesses: the Goudge Inquiry. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091221123317.htm
Canadian Medical Association Journal. "The role of medical expert witnesses: the Goudge Inquiry." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091221123317.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Science & Society News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

AP (July 30, 2014) British officials said on Wednesday that driverless cars will be tested on roads in as many as three cities in a trial program set to begin in January. Officials said the tests will last up to three years. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus

Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus

AP (July 30, 2014) Scientists in Texas are studying the Ebola virus, which has killed more than 670 people across West Africa this year. Right now, the disease has no vaccine and no specific treatment, with a fatality rate of at least 60 percent. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins