The introductory chapter presents the concept of medical law as an interdisciplinary study of law and medical practice. It sets out the raison d’être for the shift in emphasis from legal regulations of manufacture of drugs and trade to constitutional imperatives of healthcare and setting standards of practice. Examining the diverse aspects of law, the reader is informed about the branches of law that are involved in the study. Even apart from statutory laws, the importance of Indian medical regulations detailing issues of medical education and ethical code are set out. The place of medical research and protection of intellectual property rights are explained as the new global compulsions in a competitive but yet a cooperative world sharing concerns for better healthcare. The entire study is essentially on allopathic practice and how it affects public interest but assures that the principles of law are conceptually the same in the indigenous systems of medicine also.
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