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Wrong Claire McIvor?

Claire McIvor

Senior Lecturer

University of Birmingham

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I agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. I understand that I will receive a subscription to ZoomInfo Community Edition at no charge in exchange for downloading and installing the ZoomInfo Contact Contributor utility which, among other features, involves sharing my business contacts as well as headers and signature blocks from emails that I receive.

University of Birmingham

Edgbaston Park Road

Birmingham, West Midlands,B15 2TT

United Kingdom

Company Description

We are proud of the support we give our research students and the resources we make available. We support our students through providing high quality supervision, through regular feedback on the student's work and with regular monitoring both of the quality of...more

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Background Information

Employment History

Contributing Editor

Pro-VIDE Law


Senior Lecturer

SPAMfighter


Affiliations

International Association for Law and Epidemiology

Co-Founder


Open Access Publishing London Ltd

Advisory Board Member


International Association

Co-Founder


Education

Doctor of Philosophy

University of Durham


LLB

Common and Civil Law

Durham University


Web References(20 Total References)


Academic Staff - University of Birmingham

www.birmingham.ac.uk [cached]

Dr Claire McIvor
Dr Claire McIvor Senior Lecturer Dr Claire McIvor is a tort lawyer whose main research interests are: (i) liability for the acts of others (both vicarious and non-vicarious); (ii) public authority liability in negligence (particularly police liability), and more recently, (iii) legal applications of Epidemiology.


www.oapublishinglondon.com

Claire McIvor
Birmingham Law School, United Kingdom c.mcivor@bham.ac.uk


Academic staff

www.law.bham.ac.uk [cached]

Claire McIvor


www.law.bham.ac.uk

Dr Claire McIvorDR CLAIRE MCIVORClaire McIvor, LLB, MJur, PhD LecturerClaire McIvor joined the Law School in June 2006, having previously taught at Durham University.She has an LLB in Common and Civil Law with French (Queen's University, Belfast, 1998), a Masters of Jurisprudence ( Durham University, 2000) and a PhD (Durham University, 2003).Her primary teaching and research interests lie in the field of tort law and she is currently an associate editor of Professional Negligence. Dr McIvor is the Deputy Director of the LLM ProgrammeDr Claire McIvorResearch Interests:Tort


September, 2013 | Schachtman Law - Part 2

schachtmanlaw.com [cached]

As noted the other day, Claire McIvor, a senior lecturer, at the Birmingham Law School, has published an interesting U.K. perspective on the use of epidemiologic and statistical evidence in health-outcome litigation.
See "Debunking some judicial myths about epidemiology and its relevance to UK tort law," in 21 Med. Law Rev. (2013), in press. Ms. McIvor criticizes one case in particular for what she argues is an inappropriate dismissal of epidemiologic evidence as presented by an epidemiologist. Novartis Grimsby Ltd. v. Cookson, [2007] EWCA Civ 1261. Contrary to Ms. McIvor, however, the appellate court's decision gave due weight to the epidemiologist, but found that the epidemiologic evidence was accessible to, and interpretable by, the clinicians. Although neither the appellate decision nor McIvor reviewed the actual epidemiologic evidence, several studies suggest that the relative risks for benzidine-derived dyes are greater than for smoking, and especially the risk for former smokers. The judicial decision flowed not from improvidently dismissing epidemiologic evidence, or testimony by an epidemiologist, but from relying upon epidemiologic evidence marshaled by the plaintiff, through his urologist.[2] Although Ms. McIvor is correct to be concerned with the court's eager over-generalization about the ability of clinicians to understanding of epidemiologic studies, there was little suggestion that Mr. Barnard had tripped up, and there was a good deal to suggest that Professor Cartwright's opinion was lacking on essential issues. I have not seen the record or the briefs, but Ms. McIvor has not cited anything from those sources. The Court of Appeal's opinion was thus consistent with its own commitment to the conflation of risk with causation, a conflation that may well be objectionable, but does not seem to be the basis for Ms. McIvor's objections to the Novartis decision. Claire McIvor, a senior lecturer, at the Birmingham Law School, has published an interesting U.K. perspective on the use of epidemiologic and statistical evidence in health-outcome litigation. See "Debunking some judicial myths about epidemiology and its relevance to UK tort law," in 21 Med. Law Rev. (2013), in press. McIvor argues that British judges have failed to engage with epidemiologic evidence, and have relegated epidemiologic evidence to a status inferior to clinical evidence, even when testifying clinicians have little to offer the fact finder. If the be-wigged judges have done this shame on them, but McIvor suggests that a pre-trial hearing is necessary to address the proper (and improper) range of methodologies and inferences: "The very fact that methodologically problematic evidence can end up before a trial court is indicative of the need for a pre-trial admissibility test for scientific evidence in UK civil law. Such a test would afford the court an opportunity to evaluate the scientific reliability of any epidemiological evidence that the parties wish to introduce at trial." McIvor at 22. In advancing this recommendation, McIvor expands upon a recent Law Commission recommendation for what she describes as "a pre-trial admissibility test for scientific evidence in criminal litigation, similar to that which is used in the USA. McIvor at 32 (citing Law Commission, Expert Evidence in Criminal Proceedings in England and Wales (Law Comm'n No. 325, 2011)). Second, having recommended the pre-trial procedure, and the substantive standard for reliability and validity, McIvor proceeds to tell us that it [the Daubert standard] has "proven to be a rather controversial test in practice. Id. at 32 n.84 (citing no less of an authority than Carl Cranor, Toxic Torts: Science, Law and the Possibility of Justice 62-90 ( 2006)). Cranor is hardly an unbiased, reliable source, but if McIvor accepts his pronouncements, her recommendation is hard to understand. Third, McIvor gives us an example of a class of cases, which at first blush, suggest that judges on the other side of the Atlantic just do not understand science. In McTear v. Imperial Tobacco, [2005] 2 SC 1, the trial judge, Lord Nimmo Smith, ruled in favor of a tobacco company in a lung cancer personal injury case. His ruling was largely based upon a rejection of the epidemiologic evidence, which McIvor suggests is unreasonable, but then tells us that the rejection might have resulted from the plaintiffs' reliance upon reports without the benefit of an epidemiologist to explain and teach the trial judge about the meaning of the evidence. Indeed, McIvor tells us that Lord Nimmo Smith complained in his opinion that he had not been: "'sufficiently instructed by the expert evidence about this discipline' to be able to form his own judgment of the evidence. This was not an unreasonable point, at least as regards the issue of individual causation." McIvor at 32 (quoting Lord Nimmo Smith). Well, it does suggest that the good Lord may have been a stubborn Scot, who was not going to give any weight to the common wisdom, but rather insist that the plaintiff make his case in court.


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