Bolam v Friern Hospital Management CommitteeJoe Segen2016-12-27T09:28:27+00:00
Bolam v Friern Hospital Management Committee
A case in English tort law ( 1 WLR 582) which provides the legal base–the Bolam test–for assessing the standard of care in cases of alleged negligence by skilled professionals–e.g., medically qualified doctors. In Bolam, the plaintiff, a Mr Bolam, voluntarily underwent electroconvulsive therapy at a mental health institution operated by the Friern Hospital Management Committee. He was not given muscle relaxants, nor was he restrained during the procedure in which he flailed about violently and suffered serious injuries, including a fractured acetabulum.
J McNair articulated the court’s opinion that a person falls below the appropriate standard of care, and is negligent, if he fails to do what a reasonable person would in similar circumstances.