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The Medical Malpractice Problem in Maryland

If you are interested in taking a honest look at the medical malpractice problem in Maryland and around the country, Philip G. Peters, Jr’ s 2007 Michigan Law Review Article “Doctors and Juries” is a must read. The article concludes with this:

In recap, the data demonstrate that juries treat physicians very fairly, perhaps with too much deference. Given the limits of human capacity to reconstruct past events and the inevitable subjectivity of judgments about the quality of past performance, it is probably not possible to design a fault-based adjudication system that will have a substantially higher agreement rate in the cases with weak evidence of negligence. At most, modest improvements may be possible through careful refinements of trial procedure and the supervision of expert witnesses. As a consequence, both piecemeal reforms and more fundamental alternatives to malpractice litigation should not be driven by the mistaken assumption that juries treat physicians unfairly. Although the current system of resolving malpractice claims has many shortcomings, neither randomness nor favoritism toward injured patients is among them.