Taking the stand

Four optometrists who have appeared as expert witnesses spoke to Martha Henriques about what it means to assume this responsibility.

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The expert evidence of optometrists in the courtroom received increasing attention and public interest with the case against Honey Rose, whose conviction for gross negligence manslaughter was quashed in 2017. With the publication last June of the Williams review – a comprehensive survey of gross negligence manslaughter in healthcare – the issue has been preoccupying many professionals in this area. 

But what work is involved in being an expert witness? How do you balance this alongside clinical or academic work? And are some optometrists more likely to make a good expert witness than others?  

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