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July 2015 Archives

Government-run physician tracking database useless, in many cases

A federal database designed to help Americans better track the performance of physicians contains so many accuracies that it cannot be considered reliable. The database, which is run by the federal Centers for Medicine for Medicare & Medicaid Services, is supposed to track physician performance by a 10-digit number assigned by the government, but in many cases, those numbers are wrong, making it impossible for patients to research a physician’s performance history.

Patients seek relief in cases against unethical Michigan doctor, P.2

Last time, we spoke about the conviction of former hematologist and oncologist Farid Fata in Michigan for defrauding patients. As we noted, Fata is facing potential civil liability for his misdeeds, but plaintiffs do face challenges in seeking relief from the disgraced doctor.

Patients seek relief in cases against unethical Michigan doctor, P.1

When we talk about medical malpractice on this blog and in general, we are very often speaking about decent doctors who, for one reason or another, had a lapse of judgment and made a mistake that ended up harming a patient. In some medical malpractice cases, a doctor may have a history of violations due to lack of skill or carelessness, but generally mean well toward his patients.

Study: preventable surgical errors are rare, but causes remain unclear

Although we live in a country that offers some of the best health care services in the world, many of us don’t think too much about the possibility that we could be injured by our doctors. Mistakes in medical care do happen, though. In some cases, mistakes are just part of the risk of a course of care. In surgery, for instance, there is the possibility that a patient will have a bad reaction to anesthesia, or that he or she could develop an infection, despite proper care from providers.

Transparency in health care and patient compensation

A recent article on the blog Health Affairs made an important point about the current situation with the health care system when it comes to dealing with medical errors: transparency can significantly improve the outcome of cases in which medical errors occur, even when those errors result in death, but transparency is not the norm, unfortunately.