According to the Stop the Saatchi Bill Alliance:
- The bill is about removing patient rights, not giving new ones.
- It is about absolving doctors from responsibility for their actions.
- A doctor can act without the support of their colleagues, and be protected by the bill.
- It applies to treatment for any condition, major or minor.
- It applies even if there is an existing effective treatment.
- The major medical, patient and medical protection organisations oppose it.
- It will not give us a cure for cancer.
- It will inhibit research, not promote it.
What is the Saatchi Bill?
Its proper title is the Medical Innovation Bill and was written by Lord Saatchi and his team. It seeks to promote medical innovation by dispensing with current clinical negligence law in relation to decisions to provide treatment. The Bill is well-intentioned but fundamentally flawed.
Current clinical negligence law provides redress to patients who have suffered harm as a result of treatment which would not be supported by any responsible body of medical opinion. This Bill seeks to remove that right of redress where a doctor has taken a decision to treat in what the Bill defines as a “responsible” manner, even when no other doctor would support the treatment actually given. We do not believe that depriving patients of the right of redress is the best way to promote medical innovation.