In a post on February 8, 2012 I referred to an excellent article by Pauline W. Chen, M.D. She described how involvement in a medical malpractice action can negatively impact a physican’s way of practicing medicine.
Dr. Chen recently published another article in the New York Times that is also noteworthy. She explains how a medical malpractice lawsuit can be terribly stressful for a physician – – and how it can negatively impact a doctor’s ability to care for patients. These articles remind me that our system of compensation for medical errors remains desperately in need of further reform.
Dr. Chen points out that some specialists, such as neurosurgeons, can average as much as one quarter of their professional lives embroiled in lawsuits. Even if there is no ultimate payment in many of these actions, the stress on the physician can take a heavy toll.
Developing a meaningful asset protection plan will not relieve all the stress of a medical malpractice claim. But it can certainly help. As I have mentioned before, a meaningful asset protection plan can provide some emotional peace of mind as well as potential financial benefits.