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Criminal law as applicable to medical matters / healthcare professionals

This aspect of criminal law includes matters that relate to medical care or treatment and also concerns those involved in the healthcare system. Criminal law only contains specific provisions (sections 299a, b Criminal Code) with regard to corrupt behaviour on the part of healthcare professionals and those in positions of responsibility in the pharmaceutical industry.

In other cases, general criminal law will apply in criminal cases involving medical matters or healthcare professionals. This in particular includes cases of negligent bodily harm (section 229 Criminal Code) or negligent homicide (section 222 Criminal Code) as a result of errors in treatment, as well as accusations of deprivation of liberty while in care (section 239 Criminal Code).

Clinic managers, registered doctors or pharmacists are often faced with allegations of violations of secondary laws (e.g. those governing drugs, drugs advertising, medical devices, etc.) that involve separate criminal offences.

Protection of hospital operators

Hospital operators also have to take precautions, when organising clinics and staff, against potentially complex consequences under the criminal law applicable to labour issues. Such questions require a regular overall review of the criminal, labour, tax and social security regulations, with suitable measures adopted to ensure contractor compliance (see criminal compliance).

Should crimes committed by employees in hospitals or care facilities not be recognised or prevented in good time, their immediate superiors or managers may be exposed to serious accusations of neglect.