AI and professional liability assessment in healthcare. A revolution in legal medicine?

Front Med (Lausanne). 2024 Jan 8:10:1337335. doi: 10.3389/fmed.2023.1337335. eCollection 2023.


The adoption of advanced artificial intelligence (AI) systems in healthcare is transforming the healthcare-delivery landscape. Artificial intelligence may enhance patient safety and improve healthcare outcomes, but it presents notable ethical and legal dilemmas. Moreover, as AI streamlines the analysis of the multitude of factors relevant to malpractice claims, including informed consent, adherence to standards of care, and causation, the evaluation of professional liability might also benefit from its use. Beginning with an analysis of the basic steps in assessing professional liability, this article examines the potential new medical-legal issues that an expert witness may encounter when analyzing malpractice cases and the potential integration of AI in this context. These changes related to the use of integrated AI, will necessitate efforts on the part of judges, experts, and clinicians, and may require new legislative regulations. A new expert witness will be likely necessary in the evaluation of professional liability cases. On the one hand, artificial intelligence will support the expert witness; however, on the other hand, it will introduce specific elements into the activities of healthcare workers. These elements will necessitate an expert witness with a specialized cultural background. Examining the steps of professional liability assessment indicates that the likely path for AI in legal medicine involves its role as a collaborative and integrated tool. The combination of AI with human judgment in these assessments can enhance comprehensiveness and fairness. However, it is imperative to adopt a cautious and balanced approach to prevent complete automation in this field.

Keywords: artificial intelligence; causal relationship; legal medicine; machine learning; professional liability; tort law.

Publication types

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The author(s) declare that no financial support was received for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.