Advanced Diploma in Medical Law

Course available through blended / online distance learning.

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.

Course Content and Delivery

Delivery is part–time over four weekends (Friday evenings and Saturdays) plus one weekday evening. 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. Coordinated by Colm Scott–Byrne BL, 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

Lectures and tutorials will be the primary delivery method, blended options and e–learning components will be included wherever possible on the course. Where it is possible to record a session and make it available online to participants, that session will be marked as “blended learning possible” on the list below; in the case of some sessions, it will not be possible/suitable to record them and attendance in person will be the only way to secure the benefit of the session.

Classes will take place from 5.45 pm–9.00 pm on Friday evenings and from 9.30 am–3.30 pm on Saturdays. One class will take place on a weekday evening (date and time tbc).

Programme Modules

Most lectures will be recorded and students will be able to stream these recordings at a time of their choosing, dependent on their internet access. Supplementary materials will be provided online.

Course Start Date: 18th October 2019

Application Deadline: 

Please note that this is a provisional schedule in terms of the timetabling of specific lecture titles, which may switch from one scheduled weekend to another.






18th/19th October 2019

1. Course launch and introduction  (part of session not suitable for recording: attendance in person recommended)

2. Principles of clinical negligence (blended learning available)

3. Standard of care and causation in negligence (blended learning available)   

4. Clinical negligence issues: plaintiff and defendant perspectives (session not suitable for recording: attendance in person recommended)

1. Colm Scott–Byrne

2. TBC

3. TBC 

4. TBC


15th/16th November 2019

5. Expert evidence (blended learning available)

6. Regulation of medicines (blended learning available)

7. Medical confidentiality and medical records (blended learning available)

8. Clinical research on humans and animals (blended learning available)

5. TBC

6. TBC

7. TBC

8. TBC


24th/25th January 2020

9. Employment Issues in Health Care (blended learning available)

10. Consent to Treatment (blended learning available)

11. Mental Health Law (attendance in person required)

12. Mock Mental Health Tribunal (blended learning available)


10. TBC

11. TBC


21st/22nd February 2020

13. Regulation of healthcare professionals (blended learning available)

14. Assisted Human Reproduction (blended learning available)

15. Coroner’s Court (blended learning available)

16. Health Practitioner and the Family (blended learning available) 


13. TBC

14. TBC


Weekday evening: date to be confirmed

17. A view from the bench (date TBC.) (not suitable for blended learning: attendance in person recommended)



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


Who Should Attend

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.




Fees can be viewed here


How to Apply

Applications are made here.


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