Medical roundup

by Walter Olson on December 4, 2011

  • Talking back to the “malpractice litigation is no big deal, docs should grin and bear it” theorists [David Sack, ACP via White Coat] “Worst states for medical malpractice risk” [White Coat]
  • Jury awards $25 million against hospital that didn’t file abuse report after boy came in with broken wrist [Fayetteville, N.C. Observer]
  • “Doctors Question Disability Decisions as Agency Moves to Speed Up Process” [WSJ via Walter Russell Mead]
  • New “Federalist Society equivalents” in medicine (Benjamin Rush Society), business, foreign affairs [John J. Miller, Philanthropy]
  • Fieger wins $144 million verdict blaming hospital for newborn’s cerebral palsy [suburban Detroit Tribune]
  • Feds force birth control coverage on Catholic organizations, and free association suffers [Roger Pilon, Cato]
  • Phone call from doc to patient’s home did not establish subsequent jurisdiction to sue there [Madison County Record] NY steps up program to streamline courts’ handling of med-mal claims [WSJ]

{ 3 comments }

1 Evil HR Lady 12.04.11 at 12:55 am

As a parent who had a child break an arm, jumping off the couch no less, I’m horrified by the lawsuit against the hospital. We’re going to get to the point that hospitals feel they have to report every injury as potential child abuse. This will discourage people from getting care for their children as well as doing a lot of emotional damage to children who may be removed from their perfectly wonderful homes.

Childhood is and should be a bit dangerous. A broken bone in a young boy is a very normal thing. I would hope that we don’t get to the point that every injury is labeled a crime.

Even if there were huge red flags everywhere and the hospital clearly screwed up, so did the father of this child in not noticing that his ex wife/her boyfriend were pond scum.

2 nevins 12.04.11 at 4:31 pm

Regarding the boy with the broken arm not reported.
“Records at the state Department of Correction say he was convicted in November 2005 of two counts of misdemeanor child abuse and put on probation.”

Hindsight bias was no doubt a large part of the plaintiff’s argument, and the jury bought it. But were they aware of the sentence of the actual perpetrator? probably not. The best a criminal jury could come up with even knowing the boys injuries was a couple of misdemeanor charges. Using all of the evidence gathered after the fact by the DA a misdemeanor is all that can be said?, yet somehow the hospital, without two years of investigation is supposed to reach a conclusion on the spot and refer to investigation.

3 OBQuiet 12.06.11 at 11:11 pm

Dear Evil,

Not every injury will be a crime. It will just need to be investigated as one. My wife’s cousin had to put up with several years of harassment by the local Child Welfare folks because of a Hospital report about her son’s broken arm. Random inspections, time lost from work, interrogations at the offices. Didn’t help the shaky marriage which failed during this. It may still have failed but they were so busy fighting to keep their son, they lost the family.

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