Dr Sara Fovargue, Lancaster University Dr Alexandra Mullock, University of Manchester
The relationship between medical practice and criminal law is much closer than many realise. Doctors are permitted to do things that others are not, provided that what they do is regarded as ‘proper medical treatment’. The legal justification for bodily invasions in the medical context has developed according to the ‘medical exception’ to the criminal law discussed by the House of Lords in the cases of Rv Brown  and Airedale NHS Trust v Bland , and by the Law Commission in 1994. As those involved in sado-masochistic activities discovered in Brown, consent, in the absence of medical (or legitimate sporting) justification, is not enough to make harming others lawful. And in Bland, while it was legitimate for the doctors to withdraw life-sustaining treatment, if a concerned relative did the same it would become a criminal matter.
On the 30th of March, six year two students and one staff member from Lancaster Law School will travel to Accra, Ghana for a week-long educational visit to Lancaster University’s Ghana campus. They will form part of a larger group of staff and students from the Linguistics and the Politics, Philosophy and Religion departments.
This is the first visit of the Lancaster-Ghana undergraduate ambassador scheme, which aims to forge links and interaction between students and staff based in Lancaster and in Ghana. Lancaster University is the first British university to open a campus in West Africa and it aims to grow its student numbers to 200 by September 2014.