Write 5 page essay on the topic Medical Liability of Healthcare Providers.Download file to see previous pages…
Even though nobody can claim to be perfect and it is certainly rational for every physician and other medical practitioners to uphold a certain level of legal liability, the fear of medical liability has indeed forced physicians and other health care providers to perform unnecessary procedures , treatments and diagnostic tests that are often costly and non optimal in result. Study shows that the increasing liability costs, coupled with the increasing fear of physicians and other healthcare providers being sued, are the major factors that have forced majority of American healthcare providers and particularly physicians to practice defensive medicine (Koenig &. Michael, 2001). Thus, ordering procedures or even unnecessary tests that are not intended to improve the patients care but to safeguard themselves against the threat of the tort system. Each year, the cost that is directly related to defensive medicine practice by physicians for example in the United States is roughly estimated to cost the health care system about $70 – $126 billion. Discussion In a society that is becoming increasingly litigious, healthcare providers and physicians have practiced their specialties under the very real threat of being drugged to court by the very patient they lender their services. For this reason, the number of litigations instituted against physicians and other healthcare providers especially those without any merit, has been a cause of alarm not to mention the billions of dollars these law suits are costing the health care system. According to research, done by Koenig &. Michael (2001), in all the claims instituted against healthcare providers and physicians, 60% of liability are withdrawn, dismissed, or even dropped without payment. It is quite distressing, that the process of litigating these cases certainly cost the health care system a fortune to defend them. Statistics further shows that 90 percent of the cases that are taken to trial are concluded in favor of the physician, however each of these claims cost the health care system more than 110,000 dollars to defend (Mc Cammon, 2000). In an effort to circumvent the tort system, healthcare providers and physicians end up practicing defensive medicine as a means of guarding themselves against lawsuits associated with medical malpractices and negligence. This state of affairs has forced the healthcare providers and physicians to become excessively cautious in their provision of healthcare services to their patients. Consequently, excessive numbers of imagining services, hospital admissions, or lab tests are usually used by physicians as a shield against probable negligence accusations (Koenig, &. Michael, 2001). Avoiding high-risk procedures such as that involving child delivery are some of the cited examples of physicians’ practice of defensive medicine. Whilst there is no consensus regarding the nature of the medical liability system shortcoming, the opponents of the system have descended on several major areas that taint the tort system. In the first place many policymakers, analysts, healthcare providers, and physicians have raise concerns about the medical liability system failure to mitigate medical errors.
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