Cabinet proposal won't lead to less malpractice suits: CF
By Enru Lin,The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- A new Cabinet proposal will fail at reducing medical malpractice lawsuits because it cuts out a critical step of dispute resolution, said the Consumers' Foundation (CF, 消基會) yesterday.
January 11, 2013, 12:18 am TWN
Late 2012, the Executive Yuan's Department of Health submitted a bill aimed at reducing medical malpractice lawsuits. According to the bill, a patient can bring a lawsuit only after mediation and only if a physician displayed malicious intent or negligence.
“If you want to reduce litigation with this bill, you are climbing a tree to seek fish,” said Chen Chih-yi (陳智義), publisher of the CF's Consumer Reports Magazine, in a press event at the Legislative Yuan entrance on Thursday.
CF Secretary-General Lei Li-fen (雷立芬) said the bill won't succeed because it does not require a fair and objective appraisal prior to mediation.
An appraisal establishes the cause of the accident, the accident's category and other technical details in the medical dispute. It is conducted by a panel of experts who are considered impartial, according to Lei.
Without an appraisal, there is no way for patients and their families to get conclusive answers and clarify points of confusion. After mediation, confused patients and families won't give up their right to use litigation to track down the truth, Chen said.