State medical board says lawsuits continue

| 29 Sep 2011 | 10:24

    Pottstown - A late October update from the Pennsylvania Medical Board shows that doctors are still practicing in the country’s most volatile medical malpractice environment. “The inescapable conclusion from this update is that the state’s medical malpractice crisis has not ‘significantly abated,’ as claimed by Governor Rendell and reported by the media,” said Robert B. Surrick, Esquire, executive director of Doctor’s Advocate. “This is evidence that an overwhelming number of frivolous lawsuits are still being filed. It is these cases that are financially and emotionally devastating for doctors, and furthermore threatening the state’s health care delivery system.” The report indicates that: • Some 10,560 doctors were named in lawsuits from 5/22/02 to 10/31/06. • Some 8,035 files were reviewed and closed without action. • There were 81 adjudications, which were mostly for failure to report. • Four doctors were charged with malpractice. • Some 2,444 files are open and under review. • Some 6,185 files were opened between 5/22/02 and 3/1/05. • Then, 4,375 files were opened between 3/1/05 and 10/31/06. • On average 6.2 doctors were named in lawsuits each day, seven days a week, from 5/22/02 to 3/1/05. • On average 7.1 doctors were named in lawsuits each day, seven days a week, from 3/1/05 to 10/31/06. Source: Ruth Donawold, Chief Counsel, Medical Board.