Mediation services help settle medical disputes

Updated: 2007-11-03 07:32

By Liang Qiwen(HK Edition)

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GUANGZHOU: A local hospital has teamed up with judicial authorities to launch a mediation service office to settle medical disputes.

Experts expected more hospitals in the city to follow suit in the near future.

Mediation services help settle medical disputes

The "Harmonious Doctor-Patient Relations Office", a product of team efforts by the First Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou-based Jinan University and Tianhe District Judicial Bureau of Gunagzhou, is located in the hospital's backyard.

The hospital said having such an office on the premises could provide speedy assistance to patients in need of help.

According to the hospital, the number of medical disputes has been on the rise in recent years. In the case of an unsuccessful operation, some patients or their family members often take the doctors to task, thus giving rise to disputes.

Earlier this year, Guangzhou Judicial Bureau and Guangzhou Health Bureau joined efforts to search for a cure to this problem by involving judicial authorities in medical disputes.

In May, Tianhe Judicial Department began its preparation for the setting up of a mediation service office and chose the First Affiliated Hospital of Jinan University as its partner.

The office is manned by a five-person panel that includes lawyers, judicial and health officials.

The panel starts functioning when a complaint is lodged.

The ensuing mediation services will pursue a settlement for the disputing parties. When both parties are not ready to reconcile, the case will be refered to Tianhe Judicial Bureau.

"The services are provided for free," said Liu Daogui, the hospital's vice-Party secretary.

(HK Edition 11/03/2007 page3)