Medical liabilty also known as medical malpractice, is an important legal issue in Colombia. In recent years, there has been an increased focus on patient rights and holding healthcare professionals accountable for their actions. Understanding medical liability in Colombia is crucial for both patients and healthcare providers.

In Colombia, medical liability is regulated by Law 23 of 1981, which establishes the legal framework for medical malpractice cases. According to this law, healthcare professionals, including doctors, nurses, and other medical personnel, can be held liable for damages caused by their negligent actions or omissions during the provision of medical services.

To establish medical liability in Colombia, several elements must be proven:

Existence of a duty:

The healthcare professional must have a duty to provide care to the patient. This duty is established through the doctor-patient relationship or the professional relationship between the healthcare provider and the patient.

Breach of duty

It must be demonstrated that the healthcare professional breached their duty by failing to provide the appropriate standard of care. The standard of care is determined by comparing the actions of the healthcare professional to those expected from a reasonably competent professional in the same field.


It must be established that the breach of duty directly caused harm or injury to the patient. This requires demonstrating a causal link between the negligent actions of the healthcare professional and the resulting harm.


The patient must have suffered damages, such as physical or psychological injuries, as a result of the healthcare professional’s negligence. These damages can include medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, and other related costs.

In Colombia, medical malpractice cases are typically resolved through civil litigation. The affected patient or their legal representative can file a lawsuit seeking compensation for the damages suffered.

It is important to note that medical malpractice cases in Colombia can be complex and require expert testimony and evidence to support the claims.

To protect themselves from medical liability claims, healthcare professionals in Colombia are advised to maintain accurate medical records, adhere to established medical protocols and standards, obtain informed consent from patients, and continuously update their knowledge and skills through professional development and training.

In conclusion, medical liability is a significant legal issue in Colombia, with specific regulations governing medical malpractice cases. Understanding the elements of medical liability and seeking legal advice when necessary is crucial for both patients seeking compensation for damages and healthcare professionals aiming to provide quality care while minimizing legal risks.

Director. MAIKEL NISIMBLAT, Lawyer from Los Andes University Bogotá, Colombia, Program in negotiation Harvard Mit Tufts USA,  Contact us 573104854137