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Clinical negligence

Litigation Letter

Clinical negligence

Farraj and others v King’s Health Care NHS Trust and others [2009] EWCA Civ 1203; LSG 3 December p19

A chorionic villus sample was taken and sent to the Trust’s London hospital. From there it was sent to an independent specialist cytogenetics laboratory for foetal cells to be cultured. That was done and the sample returned to the hospital for testing. The test was negative. When the baby was born and found to have the disorder the parents sued the Trust and the laboratory. The judge held the laboratory was 2/3 liable and the Trust 1/3 liable. The Trust appealed on liability, causation and apportionment and the parents cross-appealed on the ground that even if the Trust was not negligent it was liable for the negligence of the laboratory because the Trust’s duty was non-delegable.

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