Does my Doctor Have Malpractice Claims?
Choosing a doctor or healthcare provider will depend on a variety of factors. First, you need to determine what type of doctor you are looking for. Most health insurance plans require you to choose a primary care doctor (usually Family Practice, Internal Medicine or General Practice). Also, if you have a chronic or disabling condition, you will likely need a specialist who can monitor your specific condition.
Another consideration is your insurance plan and whether you are restricted to plan-approved doctors or if the plan offers financial incentives to use plan-affiliated providers. Most doctors in the U.S. are board certified. The Arizona Medical Board handles disciplinary matters, and suspending or permanently revoking medical licenses. Consumers can search for a doctor or healthcare provider on the Arizona Medical Board website. However, it requires a written request to the Board to obtain additional public records related to any licensee, including dismissed complaints and non-disciplinary actions and orders.
According to the National Practitioner Data Bank, from 2014-2019 there were 7,442 adverse action reports in Arizona and 1,190 medical malpractice payment reports. The most common medical malpractice claims are: failure to diagnose an illness, misdiagnosis, failure to treat or refer to a specialist when necessary, failure to follow proper medical procedure, surgical errors, medical device breaking during procedure, delayed birth and oxygen deprivation during birth.
Other resources are the Arizona Court Records and googling the doctor’s name plus patient complaint or medical malpractice in Arizona. If your doctor has been sued, look for the facts surrounding the complaint. Is it an isolated incident, pattern of patient complaints, or was the lawsuit based on an administrative oversight? The ultimate decision rests with the patient whether to see a particular doctor. Be your own advocate when it comes to your health – do your research, ask questions, when you feel its necessary request a second opinion, additional tests, or more information before making a decision and/or considering other possible treatments.