Med. Weter. 80 (2), 88-93, 2024

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DZIKOWSKI ANDRZEJ
Veterinarian as an expert advisor: improving the quality of veterinary services and scientific research
Veterinary surgeons often provide professional veterinary advice to both their colleagues, scientists, and lay clients. A number of them give advice unwittingly, and are unaware of the legal consequences of their actions. This analysis investigates veterinary advisorship from a comparative perspective. Ethical and legal analysis, and interpretation is performed. Essential types of veterinary counseling are indicated: advice provided by a veterinarian to another veterinarian, and provided by a veterinarian to a lay client. Veterinary advice in scientific research is a mixed type. Legal and deontological relevant factors of counseling, and consultants’ liability are identified. The wide range of responsibility, and liability of veterinary consultants is demonstrated. A veterinary counselor may be subject to various types of civil liability in relation to the person seeking advice, as well as to third parties. It is argued that an explicit, or implicit advisory clause in a contract, or an independent consulting agreement may be concluded, with the special regime of liability for veterinary advisorship. The conclusion is that – despite the fact that scope and liability differ in the discussed types of advisorship – the connecting factors are: specialist knowledge, which as advice or information is provided by a specialist in relation to a non-specialist, as well as the obligation to respect professional veterinary ethics.
Keywords: veterinary forensic medicine; veterinary general practice; veterinary law; civil law; professional conduct; liability; ethics; deontology