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Health Law & Medical Law in Switzerland

  1. Medical Law and Health Law
  2. Medical Ethics and Patient Rights
  3. Market Approval for Drugs and Medicines
  4. Medical liability law Switzerland
  5. Physician and Hospital Bills
Medical Law and Health Law
The term medical law refers to the legal structure of the (contractual) legal relationships between physicians and patients as well as among physicians themselves. In addition, it includes the public-law regulations governing the exercise of the medical and dental profession and the mandatory reporting of certain diseases.
In a broader sense, the sphere of medical law can also include hospital law, the law governing the nursing professions,  the law of pharmacies and pharmaceutical law. This area, which has a public law focus, is often also called health law.
When a patient is admitted to a hospital, he or she enters a contract with the hospital, which in turn is essentially subject to the provisions of the Swiss Code of Obligations (OR) regarding the contract. In this case, the hospital undertakes to provide not only medical treatment but also the necessary care and support. The hospital is liable for the diligent fulfillment of the contract according to the rules of the medical profession.

Medical Ethics and Patient Rights
The following rights exist for patients, namely the right to medical treatment, to sufficient information, to consent, to the keeping of patient documentation and to the protection of patient data. The legal rules vary slightly from canton to canton, which is why some passages are formulated in general terms. It is advisable to also refer to the cantonal and federal legislation.
Patients have the right to be clearly and adequately informed about their state of health, the planned examinations and treatments, their possible consequences and risks, the prognosis and financial aspects. Patients have the right to assistance and advice throughout their stay in a care facility.
They have the right to continue to be supported by their relatives and to maintain contact with their environment.
Concrete rights and options as a patient:
1. your rights in the event of medical treatment
2. your right to express your will (e.g. living will)
3. your right to physical self-determination (e.g. the donation of organs,  tissues, cells and fluid)
4. your opportunity and need for counseling
Market Approval for Drugs and Medicines
Medicines Approval Ordinance – (Arzneimittel-Zulassungsverordnung, AMZV)
The approval application must contain complete documentation that corresponds to the current state of science and technology and proves the quality, safety and efficacy of the drug. The complete documentation shall include:
a. General administrative data and documentation (including draft text and illustrations for container, packaging material, and drug information);
b. Summaries of documentation in accordance with Articles 3-6 or Articles 7-11 for veterinary medicinal products;
c. where required, a pediatric investigation plan in accordance with Article 5 of the Ordinance on Medicinal Products of September 21, 2018 (VAM).
Market Approval for Medicinal Products and Medical Devices:
The Swiss Federal Law on Medicinal Products and Medical Devices (Therapeutic Products Act, TPA/HMG) regulates the handling of therapeutic products.  The focus is on the protection of human and animal health.
Only high-quality, safe and effective therapeutic products should be placed on the Swiss market. Anyone placing medical devices on the market in Switzerland must provide the authorities responsible for market surveillance with the conformity certificate on request.
Medical liability law Switzerland
When a treatment error is discovered, patients often suffer from massive health restrictions and are unsettled because the treatment did not  lead to the expected result. Medical facts and treatments are often difficult to understand, engendering a feeling of helplessness.
Medical liability law refers to the civil liability of physicians for errors in the treatment of patients in the entire medical and nursing field.  In the assessment of medical diligence, it is assumed that the physician keeps abreast of the current state of science up to date.  This applies in particular to specialists. If a physician lacks the necessary special knowledge, the due diligence requires that a specialist be consulted.
Based on the expert evaluation, it is possible to estimate your chances of success in the event of an out-of-court settlement or a court case.
Physician and Hospital Bills
You first have to check, before you pay. A procedure that can be particularly worthwhile when it comes to bills for expensive medical
For each medical service, there is an equal number of tax points charged throughout Switzerland. For the first five minutes of a consultation, for example, there are 9.57 tax points. TARMED lists around 4,500 medical services, making it probably the most detailed inventory of the medical profession worldwide.
Due to the fact that hospitals and physicians in many cases overbill privately and semi-privately insured patients, the FMH Code of Conduct requires that patients know with whom they are entering into the treatment contract.
Are you an inpatient or polyclinic patient of the hospital? or do you sign a treatment contract with the physician within the framework of the chief physician consultation?
In 2020, FINMA conducted on-site inspections at a number of insurers. The results of the on-site inspections show that physician  and hospital bills in supplementary health insurance appear to be unjustifiably high or without legitimacy.
In many invoices, it is not clear which additional services are billed to the supplementary insurance in addition to the defined flat rates for case costs from the mandatory health insurance (OKP). Further analyses by FINMA show that many contracts between supplementary insurers and service providers – doctors and hospitals – lack the necessary cost transparency.


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