There They Go Again - New Bill Guts Patients' "Right To Know"
"Sweetheart Bill for Careless Doctors," says Legal Association
January 30, 2014 (Madison) Just six weeks after a new law dramatically gutted the"right to know" of patients of medical doctors, now chiropractors, optometrists, dentists, and podiatrists want to be able to give less information to their Wisconsin patients about their treatment options too. The Wisconsin Senate is rushing a second bill through which will seek to do just that.
The new proposal, Senate Bill 518, will give dentists, podiatrists, chiropractors, and optometrists, just like medical doctors, the same option of sharing only what they think is important for patients to know about their care - instead of telling patients about all of their options before making an informed decision. Does this make Wisconsin patients safer or does it simply protect the careless minority of doctors?
"This is a bitter pill for Wisconsin," said Wisconsin Association for Justice President, Chris Stombaugh, "good doctors don't need it." The Senate appears to be trying to pull a fast one by "fast tracking" this bad bill through the legislature before Wisconsin patients realize what has happened. "It doesn't make Wisconsin any safer. It's going to lead to inconsistent patient care. But it does protect one very small group, said Stombaugh, "careless doctors."
Stombaugh criticized the bill, which was introduced on Monday and set for a public hearing today which means the full Senate could be voting on it in early February.
"Good doctors don't need this and it's a sweetheart deal for bad doctors which harms every patients' right to know to make informed choices about their health care options. It's shocking that some members of the Senate value their constituents' right to know so little," said Stombaugh.
The Wisconsin Association for Justice was founded in 1957. As the largest statewide voluntary bar association, its members support a mission of working for a fair and effectivejustice system - one that ensures justice for all, not just a privileged few.