• Law Professor Speaks Out for Patients

5/3/2012

Law Professor Gabriel H. Teninbaum has expressed skepticism about a proposed Massachusetts program that would have physicians “disclose errors to patients, apologize, and offer compensation.”

He offered his point of view on the program from the Massachusetts Medical Society and seven Massachusetts hospitals in a Boston Globe oped and in an interview on WBUR.

In the Boston Globe, Teninbaum writes that "doing the right thing for patients is not ... an end to itself. Instead, it’s another foothold for larger plans to limit access to compensation for patients harmed by malpractice."

He told WBUR that he agrees that an apology could be a positive thing for both patients and doctors if, “as part of this process at the very, very outset … there would be a statement that, ‘Look, we have potentially different and adverse interests in this because there’s a legal matter to deal with — the medical malpractice issue — and you should seek legal counsel.’ And by doing that, what you’re providing the patient with is empowerment so that they can go out and get educated on what their rights are. And from there, there can be a fuller transparent conversation where everyone is on the same page about how to resolve the matter.”

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