As a Miami Accident Attorney, I know that “accidents” doesn’t just refer to car accidents. Each year, thousands of Florida patients fall victim to “medical accidents” in hospitals and medical offices. What’s more, most of these accidents are preventable. That’s why it saddens me that the Florida Legislature has again passed a series of laws which will make it increasingly difficult for injured Floridians to seek justice for their injuries at the hands of negligent doctors and nurses.
This week, the Florida Senate passed the Florida House of Representative’s bill, number 479, which sets sweeping new rules for how malpractice attorneys can pursue justice and how victims of medical accidents can recover for their losses. In particular, the bill excludes a doctor or hospital’s failure to comply with federal requirements from evidence in certain cases. There is also an invasion of privacy issue because the bill now allows a medical malpractice defendant to interview the victim’s other treating doctors, in private and without requiring the presence of the injured victim, or his or her attorney. It’s my opinion the only purpose of such unsupervised meetings is to pressure the treating doctors into giving testimony that is favorable to the defendant doctor or hospital. It does not protect the injured victim.
In other words, if the new government in Tallahassee makes enough hoops for the injury victims to jump through, eventually he or she will give up the fight. The rights of the doctors and the powerful hospitals are apparently more important than the rights of the individual. What’s more this new legislation will do nothing to insure that health care providers do what is needed to prevent their errors in the first place. A sad day for Florida citizens, indeed.