What You Need to Know About Defensive Medicine in New York

In 2011, the debate about medical testing goes on. The debate has many components. For some people, the most important argument in the debate is the cost of the tests. They believe that a medical test should only be done if it is cost efficient. Other people are more concerned about why the tests are being done. Are medical tests ordered out of fear of potential medical malpractice lawsuits, in a practice known as defensive medicine, or for other reasons?

There is Disagreement Over Defensive Medicine

To answer that question, we must consider whether defensive medicine really exists and whether there are other potential reasons for ordering additional medical tests. Government and university sources have cast doubt on whether doctors really do order additional tests out of fear of medical malpractice lawsuits. They claim that the number of doctors who order tests out of legal liability concern is very small and that most doctors order tests for other reasons.

When Medical Tests Should be Ordered

If doctors aren't acting out of fear, then why are expensive follow-up medical tests ordered? For some doctors, the reason may be greed. Additional tests may put more money in their pockets. However, other doctors may be truly concerned about their patients and trying to reach the correct diagnosis.

Generally, whether additional medical tests should be ordered is a unique decision for each patient at each medical appointment. The decision must be individualized, and it is the job of the doctor to decide which tests to propose. A patient who is injured by too much testing, or too little testing, could be the victim of medical malpractice in New York.

Contact a New York medical malpractice attorney if you've been injured.

If you, or a loved one, have been hurt by a doctor's negligent ordering of, or failure to order, medical tests, it is important to contact an experienced New York medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. Please call 1-800-PAGAN-911 today for more information.

*Source: American Association for Justice, The Truth About Defensive Medicine