SUE THE DOCTOR
Sue lives and works in Boca Raton. She spent ten years as a full time student. Then she worked double and triple shifts as a resident doctor. Her salary was barely enough to pay for life’s necessities. She is out on her own now. She saves lives for a living. Sue is a surgeon.Sue is often awakened at two in the morning to save a child’s life or help an accident victim make it through the night. Any of us could be the next to die if Sue is not constantly diligent in her work. She possesses a superbly high sense of professional dedication to her job.Recently the law has made Sue the victim of her own profession. The big money for many lawyers is to sue the doctor. Given enough time to delve into medical records, some amount of negligence can be found anywhere. Given joint and several liability, pain and suffering, high medical costs and economic damages, big money is made on a little negligence.
Florida is known as the “sue me state".; Lawyers have created record highs in million dollar lawsuits. Several millionaires a day are created nationally by suing doctors and other deep pockets. Lawyers pocket about half of this money.
Does all this help Sue perform her delicate operations on you and your children at 4:00 a.m.? Does the constant prospect of personal bankruptcy and humiliation of defending an attack on her professional credentials help Sue raise the standards of medical care?
American history has never seen such an awesome intrusion of big government and lawyers into our personal lives until post WW II. Modern joint and several liability was born. Pain and suffering has become a national pastime. Negligence abounds. Poor Sue is still trying to save children’s lives.
The answer lies in tort reform. Make people be responsible for their own negligence, not the negligence of others. Accept pain and suffering as the natural human condition, not a source of income. Limit legal fees to the fair market value of the hours worked. Would you like to put Sue on a contingency fee if she saved your daughter’s life?
Some Americans feel that if doctors acted like lawyers, the life expectancy in America would drop by twenty years. How do you feel? Is there room for compromise?