Is there an inherent vulnerability in a patient-doctor relationship?

British Columbia, Canada


The following excerpt is from Ojo v. College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia, 1995 CanLII 313 (BC SC):

50 Norberg v. Wynrib (1992), 1992 CanLII 65 (SCC), 68 B.C.L.R. (2d) 29 (S.C.C.) is authority for the proposition that an inherent vulnerability pertains generally in a patient-doctor relationship. While the facts in that case were markedly different, McLachlin J. underscored the point that the doctor-patient relationship is, by its nature, a fiduciary one and a patient is vulnerable because of the power imbalance favouring the physician.

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