Why Would a Hospital Refer a Patient to a Medical Malpractice Lawyer?

The title of this post is not the beginning of a joke, but a serious question. Some hospitals in Maryland have begun doing just that – referring patients to medical malpractice attorneys after a mistake has been made.

MedStar Health reports that their approach is to talk to the patient about what happened, work toward a solution and, if appropriate, offer a settlement. If the patient does not agree to settle then the hospital takes the unusual step of providing the patient with the name and contact information for a medical malpractice lawyer.

MedStar, and other Maryland hospitals that use this system, say that it helps settle cases quickly and saves on legal expenses for all parties. Opponents of this system express concerns that the limited number of lawyers on the hospital’s list may have conflicts of interest.

Do you think such a system would benefit those hurt by medical malpractice in Pennsylvania or should those hurt by a doctor’s error find their own Pennsylvania medical malpractice lawyer? Please leave a comment and let us know.