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Medical records may need to be preserved for a variety of reasons, medical, legal or administrative. There may be a medical reason for continuing to keep the records but no legal reason for doing so. Conversely, there may be a legal reason for continuing to keep the records but no medical reason for doing so. It may not be enough to preserve medical records. The process of the law may require that further the makers of the documents, if available, be called to give evidence in court so as to assist in the administration of justice.

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IMAGING THE DEAD (Lecture at the Imaging Conference of the Royal Society of Medicine, U.K. on 21 October 2010)

Much of what I have to say will (I hope) be familiar to many in the audience. However, I believe it is appropriate to go back to basics to set the scene for what is to follow later today. I also do so because at least some in the room might not understand why coroners and others involved in the registration and certification of deaths do what they do.

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Citizenship and Residence Planning and Loss of Malaysian Citizenship

In modern times, the growing cross-border mobility of people all over the world brings into focus even more various legal issues, including regarding citizenship of and the right of residence in a country. This note is intended to give some guidance to Malaysians who have settled or are planning to settle in other countries. There are law firms, migration agencies, and citizenship and residence planning agencies which provide assistance and advice to such people on various aspects of the subject.

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The Montgomery test for the adequacy or otherwise of disclosure for the purpose of valid patient consent ordains that the doctor’s duty is to take reasonable care to ensure that the patient is aware of any material risk of proposed treatment and of any variant or alternative treatment (whether in respect of outcome or of potentially intervening complication). Breach of or compliance with this duty is a legal test applied by the court, and decided, where disputed, on the basis of the evidence which the judge accepts and prefers.

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The number of professional negligence claims against health care practitioners has increased a great deal of late in countries such as the United States and Britain. Even in Malaysia, there has been a noticeable increase in such claims recently. This increase is not entirely due to there being more health care practitioners in practice now than before. People are, at present, more litigation-conscious and more aware of their rights. And people are more prepared to challenge their professional advisers nowadays than they were before. This holds true not just for the medical profession but for every profession. Furthermore, developments by way of decided cases and legislation have led to higher quantum.

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