Med-Mal-PrevDo you think our medical liability system has been broken for a while? If so, you’re not alone. And now, with the recent enactment of the Affordable Care Act, our resources are more limited, our decisions more scrutinized, and we’re going to have to do more with less. The current medical liability system is simply not compatible with government-run health care rationing. We are now expected to discharge more and test less; yet, tort reform is not part of the ObamaCare equation.

In the March issue, we asked EPM readers to weigh in on the scenario below, answering the question, “Did the physician meet the standard of care?” We received 186 detailed responses. William Sullivan, DO, JD offers a final case analysis.

Traffic was light on your way to work, so with five extra minutes before the start of your shift, you stop by your mailbox. Along with some articles from drug reps and the hospital newsletter you find a letter with a return address to a law firm. Thinking, “This can never be a good thing,” you open the letter only to discover that you’ve been subpoenaed to testify in an upcoming case regarding the injuries Ms. Smith...

Anyone who has ever been served a malpractice claim knows how very frightening the experience can be. From that moment you suffer enormous anxiety until, and even beyond, the ultimate resolution of your case. When a subpoena strikes, many people wish they had a lawyer in the family, but few are so fortunate. However, there is one way that every physician can be armed in advance for what these days is an almost inevitable experience: Get a map.

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