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Optometrist charged with manslaughter by gross negligence

An optometrist, Ms Honey Rose, has become the first of her profession to face trial for alleged manslaughter by gross negligence.

An optometrist, Ms Honey Rose, has become the first of her profession to face trial for alleged manslaughter by gross negligence. 

Gross negligence manslaughter is where death is caused or significantly contributed to by a grossly negligent act or omission on the part of the defendant which is deemed by a jury to reach the criminal standard. The House of Lords R v Adomako (1994) 3 All ER 79 set out the four stage test for gross negligence manslaughter:

  1. The existence of a duty of care to the deceased;
  2. A breach of that duty of care, which;
  3. Causes (or significantly contributes) to the death of the victim; and
  4. The breach should be characterised as gross negligence, and a crime.

Ms Rose is accused of failing to notice a build-up of fluid on 8 year old Vincent Barker's brain which led to his death four months after the eye examination.  The trial will take place between 25 January and 4 March 2016.