I am an obstetrician in Maryland. I work in a community of caring and competent providers who have literally been paralyzed by the fear of malpractice suits driving them out of the business. As a professional, I’ve been in situations where a poorly educated, medically non-compliant, teenaged pregnant patient has asked me if I would mind if her “attorney” could attend the delivery. Is that how patients think they can get better medical care? What is our society coming to?
As a direct result of lawsuit abuse, physicians are now “cherry-picking” low-risk patients. Why take a chance with a high-risk patient when you get paid exactly the same without the liability?
We now see widespread discrimination against those patients deemed “high-risk” as a strategy to minimize the risk of liability. Patients with pregnancy-related complications are being systematically denied care in favor of lower risk patients. If you think that lawsuit abuse doesn’t affect you, you are wrong. You are paying for that abuse through higher insurance costs and by decreased access to qualified and caring doctors who have been victimized by this broken system.