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Medical Malpractice Law

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Vicarious Liability

Florida has adopted what it calls the theory of corporate negligence to hold hospitals vicariously liable for the acts of non­employee physicians in medical malpractice cases. It holds that because a hospital is in a superior position to supervise and monitor physician performance, and is the only entity that can realistically provide quality control, it has an independent duty to select and retain competent independent physicians. This liability attaches only when the hospital fails to exercise due care in the selection and retention of the physicians on its staff.

Florida courts have recognized that hospitals may be liable for the acts of non­employee physicians on the theories of joint venture and apparent agency.