Posted on Jun 09, 2011
June 9, 2011 – Indianapolis, Ind. – A doctor diagnosed with terminal cancer is challenging laws governing medical malpractice in Indiana, according to WRTV Indianapolis’ Channel 6. Scott Hubbard has been diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma and may only have months to live.
Doctors have told Hubbard that he could have been easily treated if he had been correctly diagnosed when he had a biopsy in 1999. The doctor responsible for the misdiagnosis has since passed away.
Physicians in Indiana are only liable for up to $250,000 for a medical malpractice claim. Larger awards are paid out of the Indiana Patients’ Compensation Fund, which doctors must pay into to defray the burden on insurance companies for million-dollar malpractice judgments.
According to the Indiana state law, patients may only recover a maximum award of $1.25 million. While Hubbard decries the law as unfair, citing nearly $5 million in medical expenses, lost wages, and decreased earning capacity, other doctors have praised the law for providing “stability” to medical practitioners.
Indiana State Representative Dr. Tim Brown, a Republican from Crawfordsville, also praised the law, citing that more doctors per capita live in the state as a result.
Under the law, if a patient wants to file claim for medical malpractice in Indiana, he or she must present their case to a medical review board of three doctors and a non-voting attorney. Since 1975, medical review panels have rejected 64% of medical malpractice claims.
The Indiana Patients’ Compensation Fund website reveals the malpractice history of physicians.
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