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Professional Liability

James S. Todd, MD
JAMA. 1986;256(15):2118-2119. doi:10.1001/jama.1986.03380150128043.
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For -A- or physicians it is not necessary to chronicle the ravages that the problem of professional liability has wreaked upon the medical profession and, more importantly, upon society. The statistics are there for all to see and, taken in the aggregate, by any reasonable interpretation, indicate a conundrum that so far has defied illumination or solution.1 For all physicians, liability insurance premiums have increased by 236% over the last decade.2 But the issue goes far beyond dollars and cents. It speaks to equity, to ethics, to medical progress, to availability of care, to confidence in medical professionals, and to what it is that society really expects of our profession. No one can deny that medical professionals are fallible, that they do make honest errors of judgment, that they do abhor incompetence. No physician sets out to be negligent. No patient is perfectly predictable in terms of response

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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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