Friday, February 11, 2005

Should you say I'm Sorry?

"We've got an idea worth listening to," said Doug Wojcieszak, who lost his brother because of a medical error and is a spokesman for The Sorry Works! Coalition. "Apologizing and fully disclosing medical errors are proven to reduce lawsuits and liability costs..."

The group aims to educate physicians, lawyers, insurance companies and patients across the country that an honest apology for medical errors followed by fair compensation is the best way to decrease insurance premiums and keep physicians from leaving.

We've all seen articles about malpractice lawsuits where the plaintiff just wanted the physician to acknowledge the mistake and say, "I'm sorry." But we are afraid that apology will be used against us. Many states' reform efforts include language to prevent those apologies from being used as admissions of wrong doing.