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Legal aspects of open disclosure II: attitudes of health professionals — findings from a national survey

Julian L Rait and Elizabeth H Van Ekert
Med J Aust 2011; 194 (1): 48.
Published online: 3 January 2011

To the Editor: It is regrettable that research published by Studdert and colleagues suggests that barriers remain to the open disclosure of medical error in Australia.1 Although all states have enacted legislation to protect defendants who apologise to plaintiffs, such protection is variable and inconsistent across Australia.2 Most significantly, the definition of what constitutes an apology varies greatly from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, as do the various protections afforded to the apology. Unfortunately, this only serves to complicate what should be an open and candid discussion of the circumstances surrounding a medical error.

  • Julian L Rait1
  • Elizabeth H Van Ekert2

  • 1 MDA National, Melbourne, VIC.
  • 2 MDA National, Sydney, NSW.

Correspondence: jrait@mdanational.com.au

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