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July 16, 2004

Dissatisfied (and much-sued) docs in Pa.

The Project on Medical Liability in Pennsylvania, which is funded by the Pew Foundation and whose orientation can perhaps best be described as establishmentarian, has released a new report on dissatisfaction among physicians in that crisis-ridden state. Not surprisingly, it finds high levels of anxiety in the most besieged specialties. The survey sampled 1,333 specialists in high-risk fields and drew 824 responses: "148 emergency medicine physicians, 155 general surgeons, 52 neurosurgeons, 187 obstetrician/gynecologists, 127 orthopedic surgeons, and 155 radiologists". "Eighty-six percent of specialists had been named in a malpractice suit at least once during their careers, and 47 percent had been sued in the three years prior to the survey." The "high rate of suit among physicians in our sample suggests that these physicians’ fear of lawsuits may be well-founded." (Michelle M. Mello, David M. Studdert, Catherine M. DesRoches, Jordon Peugh, Kinga Zapert, Troyen A. Brennan, and William M. Sage, "Caring For Patients In A Malpractice Crisis: Physician Satisfaction And Quality Of Care", Health Affairs, Jul./Aug. (PDF)).

Posted by Walter Olson at 12:08 AM | TrackBack (1)

Medicine and Law



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