January 10, 2007

Ban The Late Night Ads!

Lovitz Opinion:  Lower health care costs by banning all media advertising of health care providers, lawyers and law firms, insurance companies and, most of all, prescription drugs.

Hmmm? Yeah, that's the ticket. Read [Detroit Free Press]

December 06, 2006

Doc Sues Chicago Sun-Times

News_21 Doc wants $125 million from newspaper, tv station for calling him crap MD Read [Chicago Tribune]

Our work is done? West Virginia Democrat says med-mal crisis is history Read [Register-Herald]

Facing 'suits in W. Va, doc gets fined in 'Bama for filing phony med license application Read [Huntsville Times]

Continue reading "Doc Sues Chicago Sun-Times" »

May 01, 2006

Liability Reform Ad Battle Hits and Other News

1)We cannot push for medical reforms without working for better patient safety. And patient safety involves working to eliminate judgment errors and system errors. Then, doctors, private hospitals and consumer activists have to come together to present a persuasive argument for liability reform”
So says Shastri Swaminathan, a psychiatrist who will take over as Chicago Medical Society president in June. Well said, doc. Read [India News]

2) Any truth to this?
Every year half of all neurosurgeons in the U.S. can expect to be sued. Seventy-six percent of all obstetrician/gynecologists have been sued at least once, 57 percent have been sued twice, and nearly 42 percent have been sued three times or more. About one-third of doctors in my own specialty -- orthopedics -- as well as one-third of trauma surgeons, emergency room doctors, and plastic and reconstructive surgeons can expect to be the target of a lawsuit in any given year. Either we've got the worst medical system in the world, or our legal system is out of whack. The facts suggest the latter, as only 1 percent of claims -- 1 in every 100 -- result in a verdict for the plaintiff.” Interesting numbers being thrown out by Doctors for Medical Liability Reform. FYI: they want the Senate to enact caps on lawsuits. The 100 begin chatting this topic up on May 2. Read [Washington Times]

3) A new bill passed by the House in Arizona would require a higher legal burden of proof for medical malpractice lawsuits against health care personnel in emergency health care situations. Thoughts? Read [Insurance Journal]

4) It’s the "Please Don't Feed the Trial Lawyers" ads versus the "Haven't the Big Corporate CEO's Taken Enough?" ones. Guess whose behind which of these full-page ads appearing nationwide here and here and read up on the whole nasty battle ensuing over medial liability reform, here.

March 15, 2006

Limiting Misdiagnosis

DiagnosisTake a read of this opinion piece from the Daytona Beach News. They claim "doctors misdiagnose fatal illnesses approximately 20 percent of the time." Curious where this figure came from, but what we really like are their simple ideas to improve the "accuracy of diagnostic medicine." This can only help improve health care, increase trust, and decrease lawsuits. From the seemingly simple--more time for communication between docs and their patients--to the technical--heavier reliance on diagnostic software systems. Interesting.


February 23, 2006

Huh? Federally Insured Docs and Nurses Can't Go National

BureauWhen Katrina wrecked havoc along the Gulf Coast in 2004, medical workers from across the US headed down south to help. But many were turned away and went home. The reason: their federal medical liability coverage was only good in their home state. No coverage, no good Samaritan gestures. A new bill by Congressman Joe Schwarz (MI) would permit these medical employees to automatically retain coverage while working in a declared disaster area. Read [Toledo Blade]

January 26, 2006

Big Pharma not liable for vaccine-related injuries?

PharmaBy now, it's clear we think the country's medical liability situation needs a drastic makeover. Yet, it doesn't seem that taking care of the major drug companies helps any. Priorities, people! In a pointed critique, Dan Hamburg--former U.S. Congressman and Executive Director of the non-profit Voice of the Environment--takes aim at Washington protecting drug makers in the latest Department of Defense Appropriations bill. Read [Santa Monica Mirror]

January 19, 2006

Newspaper gets docs and lawyers to TALK

NegotiateAfter four years, there's been little substantive movement on how to fix Washington State's worsening med-mal and liability situation.  Two ballot initiatives failed last fall.  Lawyers and doc groups have been bickering. And they've launched dueling, cutting campaigns. But nothing has happened.  So they're back at the negotiating table... in the community room of The Olympian newspaper! How about them apples?  Some of the recycled, er, new ideas floated: consider a “no-fault” system like workers’ compensation for injured parties; have the state insurance commissioner tightly regulate insurers; push plaintiffs and defendants to settle claims for negligent medical care early on; collect data on bad medical outcomes and incidents in hospitals. We like it. Though, talk is--how do you say--cheap. Read [The Olympian]

December 01, 2005

A scary scene in Tennessee


We give you the head’s up on a straight shooting opinion piece sounding alarm to Tennessee’s medical liability situation. George Woodbury Jr. pleads for the state’s House and Senate to tackle the problem. It’s peppered with startling figures—“Data shows the cost of liability insurance in Tennessee has gone up 87 percent between 1999 and 2005”—and some choice lines of the legal lotto variety from law firm ads airing in Memphis--“One firm asks people to contact them for ‘any injury, major or minor’ [and] another states ‘the sky's the limit.’ Read [The Memphis Flyer]

November 17, 2005

Take five, lobbyists

Roundtable_3 "After spending $15 million in one of the nastiest campaigns in recent memory, both doctors and lawyers failed to peddle their narrow self-interests to the voters.” So says the Seattle Post-Intelligencer Editorial Board. But med liability problems remain and the editorial demands a next step: the Washington Legislature needs to round up objective expertise in economics, public health, nursing, social services, non-profits and business to reform not only tort law but the malpractice insurance industry and medical disciplinary practices. Finalement! Read

About TMMS

  • ThisMakesMeSick answers renowned medical inventor Dr. Robert Fischell's wish to spread awareness (and outrage!) about the medical liability crisis that's ruining our healthcare system.

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    • Fretted over rising malpractice premiums?

    • Signed a truly unbelievable medical liability waiver?

    • Faced a frivolous lawsuit?

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    • Practiced defensive medicine?

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You don't say...

  • "This election destroyed a popular Karl Rove myth. The truth is that trial attorneys are winning, attacks on trial attorneys are backfiring and opponents of the civil justice system are losing."

    The CEO of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America said.

  • "We have discovered that virtually all patients are willing to sign a contract in which they agree not to sue their doctors on frivolous grounds."

    Jeffrey Segal, M.D, a board-certified neurosurgeon and the founder and president of Medical Justice Services, Inc., said.

  • "Low-risk obstetrics has been done here for 60 years, but not anymore."

    Carl Hanson, chief operating officer of the county-run Minidoka Memorial Hospital in southern Idaho hospital's, explained as they get out of the baby business. Read

  • "I have children, and I don't know where they're at."

    Rosalinda Elison, a former patient at the UC Irvine Medical Center’s fertility clinic, said after learning that that her eggs and embryos had been stolen and implanted in another woman who then gave birth to twins.

    Read more You Don't Say, here.

Crisis by numbers:

  • $4.6 million

    New York state grants available to expand the use of electronic medical records. Such initiatives have been hailed nationally as a way to cut medication errors, save money and improve patient safety. LINK

  • $700,000

    Amount raised by Fairness and Accountability in Insurance Reform to oppose malpractice limits in Arizona. LINK

  • $450,000

    Amount the Arizona Medical Association says Arizonans for Access to Health Care has raised to decide whether to push for montetary limits on lawsuits. LINK

    Read more CRISIS BY NUMBERS, here.

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