What Physicians Need To Know About A Patient’s Right To Know


In response to a growing concern about patient deaths resulting from medical malpractice, New York has enacted legislation that will allow individuals to obtain more information than ever before about their health care providers. This legislation was adopted following publicity concerning the death of Lisa Smart during an operation performed at an outpatient clinic of Beth Israel Medical Center by a physician serving a five-year license suspension for repeated negligence in the treatment of six obstetric patients. In an effort to provide patients with more information regarding their physicians and thus enable them to make educated choices about their care, Gov. George Pataki, on October 6, 2000, signed a bill, (the Patient Health Information and Quality Improvement Act of 2000 §2995 et seq.) dubbed “Lisa’s law”, which will allow patients to access information regarding their physicians via the internet (www.health.state.ny.us) or a toll-free number (800-663-6114). By disclosing physician profiles, New York has joined the ranks of many states, including Massachusetts, that have enacted such legislation.

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