Advanced Diploma in Medical Law

Course available through blended / online distance learning.

Since Covid–19 restrictions came into force on March 12, this course was delivered 100% online through our accessible Virtual Learning Environment. Read about the recent changes here

King’s Inns will continue to offer this course online for 2020/2021 until it is safe to deliver in person as well on campus. Attending classes in person will be optional. 

We know social interaction with fellow students, lecturers and visiting speakers is an integral part of the King’s Inns experience and once a safe opportunity presents, we will invite students back on campus.


This course provides a comprehensive overview of Medical Law with a focus on both domestic and European in that area. Participants will develop an understanding of the practical application of Medical Law principles, the legal obligations on medical professionals and regulatory practice.

Medical practitioners should note that this course has been approved for 15 external CPD credits by the College of Psychiatrists in Ireland, on the basis of full attendance and completion of the course. External CPD credits approved by the medical training bodies in Ireland (College of Psychiatrists, Royal College of Physicians, College of Anaesthetists and Irish College of General Practitioners) benefit from mutual recognition and approval as between those bodies.

Programme Aims and Learning Outcomes

This course aims to inform participants about the legal environment surrounding the medical professions in Ireland. In particular, participants will: 

  • Develop a critical understanding of the theories, concepts, principles and policies underpinning medical law in Ireland;
  • Examine the legal framework in which medicine is carried out and consider its implication for clinical practice;
  • Identify situations which may give rise to legal claims;
  • Describe and explain the current legal issues affecting clinical practice and hospital management; 
  • Examine the role of different actors and bodies in regulating the health care professions;
  • Use legal terminology relating to this area of the law competently and correctly;
  • Describe and explain key principles in this area;
  • Debate potential legislative reforms in this area
  • Identify factual, legal and practical issues arising in the context of a problem question scenario;
  • Formulate and present written and oral arguments.

Who is the course for?

This course will be suitable for clinical and managerial healthcare professionals who wish to improve their knowledge of medico–legal aspects of healthcare. It will also be of interest to lawyers working or seeking to improve their expertise in medical law, and to policy makers and regulators. 


The coordinator of the course is Colm Scott–Byrne BL.

Course Content and Delivery

Delivery is part–time over four weekends (Friday evenings and Saturdays) plus one weekday evening. Classes will take place from 5.45pm–9.00pm on Friday evenings and from 9.30am–3.30pm on Saturdays. One class will take place on a weekday evening.

Course Start Date: Friday 16 October 2020 (provisional) 

Application Deadline: Friday 25 September 2020

Lectures from high calibre experts, both legal and clinical, will be complemented by tutorials which will enable participants’ close focus and honing of skills most relevant to their own decision–making context. This course will provide valuable insights into the legal framework affecting medical practice in Ireland. Contributors will be top clinical and legal experts including (provisional):

  • Professor Harry Kennedy
  • Professor Damian Mohan
  • Michael Boylan (Solicitor)
  • Mary Hough, Partner and Head of the Healthcare Team, Hayes Solicitors
  • Dr Ciarán Craven SC
  • Oonah McCrann SC
  • Dr Simon Mills SC
  • Asim Sheikh BL
  • Neasa Bird BL
  • Andrea Mulligan BL
  • Mark Tottenham BL
  • Georgina Farren BL

This course is available via blended online learning, with classes recorded using e–learning software and made available to students for streaming via our Virtual Learning Environment. This means that, while all students are welcome to attend class in person, all sessions except the last lecture (view from the Bench) is recorded so that students who are based outside Dublin or who are otherwise unable to attend can view the material by streaming their class at any time. 

All class notes are available online before lectures take place. Online tutorials and IT support are available to help students navigate their way through our Library and legal resource databases.

Complimentary parking and refreshments are provided for participants attending in person.

Please note that the schedule below is provisional. 







1. Course launch and introduction 

2. Principles of clinical negligence 

3. Standard of care and causation in negligence 

4. Clinical negligence issues: plaintiff and defendant perspectives 

1. Colm Scott–Byrne






5. Expert evidence 

6. Regulation of medicines 

7. Medical confidentiality and medical records 

8. Clinical research on humans and animals 







9. Employment Issues in Health Care

10. Consent to Treatment

11. Mental Health Law

12. Mock Mental Health Tribunal






13. Regulation of healthcare professionals 

14. Assisted Human Reproduction

15. Coroner’s Court

16. Health Practitioner and the Family






17. A view from the bench.



Assessment will be via two written assignments, each worth 50% of the overall mark for the course. 

Course Fee

Total cost of course: €2,350.

Fee structure can be viewed here

BL graduates who are subscribing members to King’s Inns receive a 10% discount on this course. Click here for more information.

How do I Apply?

We are now taking applications for this course. 

Apply here

There is no admission requirements for this course. Your place on the course will not be secured until payment is received in full.

Payment can be made through the application portal using your credit / debit card.

If your employer is paying for your studies, you will require a PO number, the name and email address for the person responsible for payment in your organisation. The invoice will issue directly to the person whose details you enter. You will also be able to download a copy of the invoice through the application portal.

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