A lawyer argues for more malpractice lawsuits

A view from the other side (NEJM – subscription required). This time it’s George Annas, the medical ethicist and JD from Boston, with a dissenting view on the malpractice problem:

Like most defendants in tort litigation, physicians have always despised malpractice suits. Even those who consider litigation appropriate in cases of serious injury to a patient still think of the system as fundamentally flawed and corrupt. But modifying the traditional tort system in ways that will benefit both physicians and patients is much more difficult than is usually recognized by the medical profession and requires sustained and constructive dialogue with the legal profession. With respect to the issue of patient safety, at least, lawyers and physicians should see themselves as natural allies, rather than as predator and prey. The patient-safety problem is complicated, and no single change in the tort system (including a recognition of a right to safety) will solve it, any more than the elimination of legal liability for vaccine manufacturers will solve our chronic vaccine shortages.

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  • WilliamManginoMd

    Here is the problem, George – who is going to define ‘safety’. And while we are waiting for that definition – how many lawyers are going to make a mad dash to maximize their portfolios off the backs of physicians who chose a career in hopes of helping others.

    I have great respect for the legal profession and also believe most cops are great guys.

    There is nothing more inspirational than watching Atticus Finch defend an innocent black man during a bleak period of American history. There is nothing that I respect more than a homicide detective trying to solve the strangling murder of a 25 year old girl, left in a Philadelphia park, burned beyond recognition.

    There is nothing more repugnant than a bunch of punk cops trying to screw over a pain specialist for prescribing opioids in a legitimate fashion – or a lawyer/addicted – family combo trying to bankrupt a doctor for prescribing opioids for pain to their scum-ball, drug mixing, 30 year old son who did cocaine for 10 years prior to encountering a doctor courageous enough to prescribe for his pain; in order to try to prevent him from suffering. Especially when it is in retribution for the doctor having thrown the whole lot of them out of his practice when he discovered they were ‘dealing.’

    Is that part of your legal profession’s admonition that lawsuits serve to educate physicians and improve patient safety?

    Why don’t you go have some discourse with fundamentalist terrorists and The Taliban.

    If you are successful with them – then take your techniques to The DEA and Malpractice specialists.

    Good fukin luck.

    And, by the way – the girl in the park was my daughter and I’m the doctor on the moron cops and DEA hit list

  • Anirban

    Dr. Mangino I’ve a sister of almost that age. I understand what you’ve gone through.Extremely sorry for your loss.may God give you the strength to get over it. Take care

  • WilliamManginoMd

    Thank you Anirban 5;48 A.M.

    I will not be reading or posting on this website again.

    Best wishes to everyone

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