From Medical Malpractice to Quality Assurance

Source: Frank Sloan and Lindsey Chepke, Issues in Science and Technology, Spring 2008

A properly designed malpractice insurance system could actually decrease the prevalence of errors and enhance the overall level of care.

Every decade or so, the United States is seized with a fervor to reform medical malpractice. Unfortunately, this zest is typically motivated by circumstances that have little to do with the fundamental problems of medical malpractice, and the proposed changes to the system do not address the true flaws. A well-functioning malpractice system should focus not only on how to compensate patients for medical errors but also on how to prevent these errors from occurring in the first place.

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