The nation’s state medical boards regularly allow thousands of physicians to continue practicing medicine even after findings of serious misconduct that puts patients at risk. Their medical licenses remain active despite being barred by hospitals or other medical facilities and, sometimes, after paying millions of dollars to resolve malpractice claims. Some state boards have become more responsive; however, many state and federal records still paint a frightening picture of a physician oversight system that is quick to excuse problems and struggles to manage workloads in an era of tight state budgets. Records indicate that between 2001 and 2011, nearly 6,000 doctors had their clinical privileges restricted or taken away by medical institutions for misconduct involving patient care. However, 52 percent of these physicians were never fined or hit with a license restriction, suspension, or revocation by a state medical board. Almost 250 of the doctors sanctioned by health care institutions were cited as an “immediate threat to health and safety,” yet their licenses were not restricted or revoked. Approximately 900 were cited for substandard care, negligence, incompetence or malpractice and were allowed to continue practicing with no licensure action. Among the almost 100,000 doctors who made payments to resolve malpractice claims from 2001 to 2011, about 800 were responsible for ten percent of all the money paid. The total payouts averaged $5.2 million per doctor and yet fewer than one in five faced any kind of licensure action by their state boards. In 2011, the consumer watchdog group, Public Citizen reported that medical boards “are not properly acting on (clinical privilege) reports after becoming aware of them.” Little has changed since Public Citizen’s assessment and the congressional concern created because of it. Physicians with records of gross misconduct are still practicing. If you have been the victim of medical malpractice, you will need a competent lawyer to help ensure maximum compensation for your claim. The doctor will hire a team of top-notch lawyers who specialize in defending medical malpractice, and will pull out all the stops to fight your claim. Every malpractice case is unique and the value of the claim depends on a detailed analysis of several different factors. If you feel that you have been the victim of medical malpractice, contact an experienced malpractice attorney quickly to help you understand the potential value of your claim.
Contact Seattle’s Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Attorneys
At Phillips Law Firm, our premier Seattle medical malpractice lawyers can help you explore all of your legal options. We represent patients in Seattle, Bellevue, Everett, Tacoma, or anywhere in the State of Washington who have been injured by doctors or medical professionals. Call Phillips Law Firm at 1-800-708-6000. Our attorneys are waiting to assist you 24/7, offering a free case evaluation. Remember our no fee promise. If we do not recover anything for you, you do not owe us an attorney fee.