Research May Help Prove Expert-Witness Bias in Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
Side note: A new study could shed light on the role of paid expert witnesses in medical malpractice lawsuits. The study tested a group of 31 radiologists to see if they came to the same conclusion on a CT scan as four paid expert witnesses. Not one of the 31 doctors were able to see the problems noted by the paid expert witnesses in their testimony.
While not conclusive evidence, this study certainly raises questions on the role of expert witnesses in medical malpractice lawsuits. If this study is correct, the creation of independent teams of experts that are not paid by trial lawyers could save our health care system millions by decreasing the number of frivolous lawsuits, lowering physician malpractice insurance premiums, and relieving doctors and patients of the burdens of defensive medicine.
By Christopher Wanjek, LiveScience’s Bad Medicine Columnist
A new study calls to the stand the legitimacy of expert witnesses, those doctors and other medical specialists hired by lawyers in medical malpractice suits to convince the jury that someone somewhere goofed.