New Study Sheds Light On Medical Malpractice System


A recent article appearing in the New York Times sheds light on a new study raising concerns over a lack of initiative to improve the quality of American healthcare.  The article, A Missed Opportunity for the Malpractice System to Improve Health Care”,  by Aaron E. Carroll , refers to a study containing information about a system that “not only compensates patients who have been harmed, but is also supposed to identify physicians who may be performing poorly and need correction.”

Medical malpractice is a negligent act or omission committed by a healthcare provider whose treatment failed to meet the standard of care, causing harm to a patient.

According to the article, the study found that approximately 2 percent of doctors accounted for 39 percent of all claims in the United States. The article states that “the overwhelming majority of doctors who had five or more paid claims kept on going.  And they also moved to solo practice and small groups more often, where there’s even less oversight, so those problematic doctors may produce even worse outcomes.”

In order to prevail in a medical malpractice claim, the injured patient, or family of a deceased patient, must establish: the applicable standard of medical care; a departure or departures from the standard of care; a causal relationship between the departure from the standard of care and the injury; and the extent of harm or damages.

The article further states that “Research has shown that the malpractice system, in terms of being a deterrent, has limited effects on the quality of care. A National Bureau of Economic Research working paper from 2014 found that the system — which largely holds physicians to “standards of care” — doesn’t seem to lead to higher quality according to widely accepted metrics.”

The attorneys at Lacy Katzen LLP  have successfully represented individuals in cardiac, pediatric, emergency medicine, radiologic, primary care medicine, critical care medicine, neurologic, neurosurgical, ophthalmology, urologic, obstetrical, orthopaedic, oncologic, vascular, surgical and infectious disease suits, including the failure to diagnose cancer, heart disease, autoimmune disease, infectious diseases and other diseases and conditions.

We are committed to fighting for the rights of the victims of medical malpractice.