Rare Physician Win in Peer Review Lawsuit

Since enactment of the Health Care Quality Improvement Act in 1986, physicians haven’t usually fared well when they go to court to stop or delay hospital peer review actions, provided the hospitals follow the procedural steps set out in the Act. But Dr. Patrick Murphy persuaded the Illinois Appellate Court …

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Should Accident Victims Recover their Medical Bills Twice?

Most of us think that accident victims should be able to recover for their medical bills.  But recover twice?  That issue is at the heart of the case argued before the United States Supreme Court on March 1. The Federal Employees Health Benefits Act (FEHBA) empowers the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to …

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When 30 Days Is Not 30 Days

When is 30 days not 30 days? Concerned about a surgeon’s skill, a hospital ordered him to “have five bowel surgery cases proctored,” specifying no time limit.  After a month, when the surgeon hadn’t met the five-case requirement, the hospital filed an adverse report with the National Practitioner Data …

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Agency Law Takes Center Stage in Psychologist Torture Case

If you think agency law is boring, take a look at the Jan. 27 opinion by a federal court in the torture case brought by three foreign citizens against two psychologists who worked for the CIA.  The plaintiffs filed suit under the Alien Torture Act, alleging that they were subjected to an experimental torture …

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CMS Report Blasts Provider Directory Errors

A new report by CMS echoes many patients in criticizing Medicare Advantage (MA) online provider directories for containing too many errors.  “Online Provider Directory Review Report” concludes that too often a directory entry is incorrect because the provider wasn’t at the listed location, the phone number …

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Physician Liability for Death of Nonviable Fetus

If an obstetrician’s negligence causes the miscarriage of a nonviable fetus—i.e., one that couldn’t live outside the womb--does the patient have a cause of action for wrongful death?  In Alabama the answer is yes, according to a unanimous opinion by the state’s highest court. Kimberly Stinnett alleged …

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