Updates in medical professional liability: a primer for electrophysiologists
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Medical professional liability (MPL), traditionally known as medical malpractice, affects most electrophysiologists some point during their career, either directly through personal experience or indirectly by the experiences of colleagues. Despite this, most physicians struggle to accurately describe MPL in the context of clinical practice. Providers know little about the outcomes of malpractice claims as reporting of settled or litigated MPL cases is sparse in the medical literature. In the USA, individual patients can file a malpractice claim in a tort-based system, whereas in other parts of the world, no-fault malpractice systems are increasingly prevalent. Tort reform remains a topic of much debate as the economic costs of malpractice contribute to the ever-expanding costs of health care in the USA. This review provides a framework to define MPL, describes the tort and no-fault systems of malpractice, and details the economic impacts of MPL on health care and the practice of cardiology in the USA. Current policy trends towards MPL including tort reform are reviewed, and MPL as it relates to the practice of cardiac electrophysiology is detailed.
KeywordsMedical malpractice Malpractice Medical professional liability MPL Cardiology Electrophysiology Tort
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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