Tort reform lessens the risk of medical malpractice, “but it doesn’t change the capriciousness of the legal system … and it hasn’t changed the nature of the risk.” “If there is ANY DELAY AT ALL in the diagnosis of a condition, then they label it as ‘malpractice.’” This Newsweek article explains very succinctly why defensive medicine is real – despite what the American Association for Justice’s mouthpieces would tell you. Ooops. One lawyer in the comment section says defensive medicine is a myth. Oh well. There goes my theory.
It’s not really patient “dumping” — I helped her get out of the car. Florida surgeon cuts wrong duct during gallbladder surgery, then brings patient to another hospital in his own car and drops her off at the emergency department, telling her to inform the staff that she was discharged from the first hospital two days prior. Funny … his hospital notes showed that the patient was feeling better and that he was discharging the patient home. Moron.
Michael Jackson’s heart was still beating when he got to the emergency department. Joe Jackson, Michael Jackson’s father alleges a “cover up” in Jacko’s death. Yeah. The agonal heart rhythm must prove it. Sorry, but I just could never write about celebrities for a living.
The Wisconsin State medical malpractice fund was running a surplus. Then Governor Jim Doyle raided the fund for $200 million to cover some of the state deficits. Now, payments to patients have the fund running at a net negative for the past two years. This year it is $109 million in the hole. Governor’s response: The fund could afford to give up the money – it had a surplus. Next source of state revenues: Children’s piggybanks and the spaces between old ladies’ couch cushions.
Total emergency department visits dropped by 1.3% in 2009. Meanwhile, emergency department visits by Medicaid recipients increased by 6%. When few physicians accept your insurance, where are you supposed to go for treatment of your medical problems?
Should psychotherapists Google their clients? What about Facebook friending? Personally, I think the whole Facebook thing between physicians and patients really crosses the line for a professional relationship. Will patients start disclosing their protected health information on your Facebook wall? Will physicians be hesitant to deny inappropriate requests for prescriptions or requests for medical care out of the office because they don’t want to offend their Facebook “friends”? I stay off of Facebook for just this reason.
Don’t have your heart attack in Nova Scotia on Sunday night or during Monday afternoon. This Nova Scotia emergency department will be closed — due to physician shortages.
Now that health care is all shored up, we can start fixing this country’s legal system. Enter SinglePayerLegal.org. According to the site … half of poor Americans suffer from at least one serious legal problem each year, but 75% of those people have no access to legal care … thousands of innocent working Americans are wrongfully convicted of crimes every year – in part due to negligent or poorly trained lawyers … and the average profit per partner at the most successful law firms was more than $750,000 per year.
I really think we should pass a law about this whole legal mess.
Hat tip to Throckmorton.
Philippine physicians take a mass leave of absence from Philippine General Hospital to “to strongly protest the lack of a democratic process” in selecting hospital director. Hospital staff elected one person for the hospital director and the hospital chose someone else. Now administrators can do the appendectomies.
Houston’s mayor may have priced some retired city employees out of the healthcare market by increasing insurance premium payments by 50%. The city is required to pay for 79% of active employee health care costs, but there is no minimum payment for retirees. Why did the mayor cut retiree benefits? All about the Benjamins – that demographic used the plan far more than active employees or retirees over age 65. The article states that many other cities and states around the country are looking at making similar cuts.
Ten thousand emergency department visits for dental problems in one city in one year. Checkups at a dental office cost $24 per visit. Emergency departments cost $600 per visit (although I’m sure the state actually pays much less than that amount). What does Minnesota’s governor do to help improve the state’s budget crisis? Cut non-emergency dental health services for the state’s Medicaid recipients. No, their cavities won’t miraculously disappear. They’ll just end up in pain in the emergency department with no access to proper dental care. And the state will pay out more money in emergency care than it would have saved by just providing preventative care to begin with.
AT&T, Caterpillar, 3M and other companies are expected to have non-cash earnings that are $14 billion less due to non-cash expenses from the health care bill. Health care benefits paid to retirees are also no longer deductible. How will these changes affect tax revenues and retiree health care?
Mt. Vernon, Illinois hospital implements policy to discourage drug-seeking patients. Allergic to NSAIDS? Looks like you’re getting Extra Strength Tylenol, a pat on the back, and some good wishes for your chronic pain. No narcotics will be given to chronic pain patients. Lost or expired prescriptions for any pain medications will not be refilled.
Why is it that patients never lose prescriptions for their blood pressure medications, anyway?
Given the title of the article, I thought they were talking about me. Nope. The “new dummy” in the emergency department was just a training mannequin.
What are some experts recommending that doctors do after Medicare cuts?
“Doctors may need to think of changing the amount of time they allocate to Medicare patient encounters or limiting the hours per day they can accept Medicare patient appointments. And even with that, you want to handle those times as efficiently as possible … You might decide to see 6 patients an hour instead of 4 and to get the exam rooms turned over more quickly. Or, while it may sound unfair or insensitive, a practice could allocate only a day a week for Medicare patients and move those patients through much faster.”
In other words, “decrease access to Medicare patients.”
Have Medicare? Sorry, only one complaint per appointment. Here’s a referral. Have a nice day.