Medical malpractice, liability of healthcare professionals and patient protection in the democratic republic of Congo from 2015 to 2019

Akondji Bainakofota Dieudonné 1, *, Angoyo Manvota Jacques ², Menga Nongo José 3 and Assani Ramazani Raymond 3

1 University of Kisangani, RD Congo.
² Independent researcher affiliated to the Higher Institute of Medical Techniques of Isiro, Upper Uele Province. RD Congo.
3 Higher Institute of Medical techniques of Kisangani, RD Congo.
Research Article
World Journal of Advanced Research and Reviews, 2024, 22(03), 1217–1230
Article DOI: 10.30574/wjarr.2024.22.3.1300
Publication history: 
Received on 20 March 2024; revised on 25 May 2024; accepted on 28 May 2024
Introduction: The aim of the study was to determine the reasons for medical errors committed by health professionals in hospitals in the city of Kisangani, to demonstrate the legal instruments on which Congolese law relies to protect patients in the event of medical error, to identify the modes of reparation reserved for victims of medical error in the jurisdictions of the city of Kisangani and the Province of Tshopo, and to report on the progress of the study.
Methodology: The study took place in the city of Kisangani and was based on two methods. Firstly, the interrogative method, using interview techniques based on a pre-established questionnaire, which enabled us to collect information from health professionals, victims of misconduct and legal actors. Secondly, the documentary method, which enabled us to collect data from the Simama Functional Rehabilitation Centre in Kisangani on the files of victims of medical misconduct, and from the Kisangani High Court for cases that had been tried.
Results: Poor concentration (accumulation, etc.), overwork and lack of knowledge of the procedure to be performed are the most frequent causes of malpractice, accounting for 35.1%, 26.3 and 13.9% of cases respectively. Book II of the Penal Code and the law on the protection of children (tied at 100%) are the main laws protecting patients from medical malpractice, the law protecting people living with HIV (65.6%) and the Congolese Civil Code, Book III (56.3%). Lastly, the Constitution of the DR Congo of 18 February 2006 and the Decree of 19 March 1952 (tied at 31.3%) complete the legal arsenal of Congolese laws protecting patients.
Conclusion: In the DRC, the issue of medical errors represents a real challenge for society. The human, social and economic consequences are dramatically underestimated. In Kinshasa and elsewhere, people are dying as a result of errors made by medical staff.
Medical malpractice; Liability; Healthcare professionals; Patient; Protection
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