Aaron Jacobson


Public Benefit Activities of a hospital, university or welfare agency have been looked upon with special favor by the law for many decades-a genuine kind of legalistic paternalism. They being institutions of beneficent motive, the policy of the judiciary has been to aid them through notable departures from the rules. Arguments to the contrary met a stone wall of "public policy." One such departure is exemplified in the immunity from liability for the tortious conduct of their employees that hospitals have enjoyed. Thus, a patient injured through negligence while in the care of a hospital often had no recourse, no matter how severe the injury or how gross the negligence, in the past; and if he died, his dependents were similarly left without remedy.