In the case of Ricter v. Singlett Memorial Hospital Dr. Larry Posten had the duty to warn the third party, Emily’s parents, that their daughter was in danger. Davis Copitt was the patient of Dr. Posten, and he mentioned that he was planning to kill his classmate Emily Ricter. Dr. Posten requested that the campus police would detain Copitt, the police decided that Copitt was sane and released him from detention. The police and the psychologists from the university failed to warn Emily Ricter and her family of potential harm. A California law states “a psychotherapist may incur a duty to warn and protect a “reasonably identifiable” victim when a patient “has communicated to the psychotherapist a serious threat of physical violence”…show more content… In spite of the fact that Copitt was arrested, he was released off of a promise and by what the police thought was rational behavior.
A health care provider must understand many aspects of statutory duty. Duty is “a legal obligation imposed on one to conform to a recognized standard of care to safe guard the rights of others”. The standard of care is usually related to medical malpractice cases. Standard of care is defined as “the caution and prudence that a reasonable person would exercise under the circumstances or by appropriate authority for such situations”. This is mainly of importance because all physicians are expected to perform within the guidelines of this duty, and this standard or care changes depending on the circumstances. “Once the duty has been established, the plaintiff must show that it was breached by presenting evidence of the facts of the case and testimony from expert witnesses regarding whether the standard was met”(Showalter, 2014 p 139). Negligence results in the failure to meet this standard of care, and the jury usually decides if the defendant is guilty of committing a negligent act. Causation is an aspect of negligence. The defendant could be held liable for negligence if the act was considered to be foreseeable, and if the injury occurred from a breach of duty.
Damages are another important aspect of statutory duty. Damages could