The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed...


Link To Us
Add A Link
Sign the Guestbook
View the Guestbook

Get your own FREE Guestbook from htmlGEAR

Tell A Friend:
 Click here to pass-on this site's url
get this gear!
If you want to keep your freedoms, you're in the place - but 70 million other American gun owners aren't. Tell them - Pass-it-on!


Please consider making a donation to help finance Musters, pay for advertising and to purchase educational materials.
Make a donation with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!

Do the math yourself and you'll see gunowners are safer than doctors...

Inept Doctors Not Being Identified As Required
May 29, 2001 5:13 pm EST

By Will Dunham

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Health maintenance organizations and hospitals are undercutting a law aimed at protecting Americans from inept doctors by failing to report them to the U.S. government as required, federal officials said on Tuesday.

Between 44,000 and 98,000 Americans die annually due to medical errors, medical experts estimated in 1999.

But a new report by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General found that 84 percent of HMOs from 1990 to 1999 failed to report even one physician to a government data base on incompetent doctors.

In addition, 60 percent of hospitals reported no doctors to the data base, the report said.

The National Practitioner Data Bank was created by Congress in 1986 amid concern among lawmakers that doctors who had been stripped of their licenses to practice medicine in one state simply were moving to another state and setting up shop.

Information reported to the data base about specific bad doctors is not made available to the public. The data base is intended to serve as a national repository of information to help state licensing boards and health care providers make well-informed decisions regarding doctors.

"It's a very troubling report," Oregon Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden, author of the law, said in an interview.

"I hope they (HMOs) will take it as a wake-up call that it's fine to talk about how you are for quality health care, but if you don't report a practitioner who has engaged in flagrant misconduct, that is not in the public interest nor is it promoting quality health care."

The report said HMOs and hospitals were required under the law to report to the data base any disciplinary action that affected a doctor's clinical privileges for at least 30 days.

The discipline could stem from actions including negligent care such as unwarranted surgery or operating on the wrong side of a patient's body, having sex with patients, improperly prescribing drugs and personal drug use. The report called such discipline an "adverse action."

"With close to 100 million individuals enrolled in these organizations and hundreds of thousands of physicians and dentists associated with them, fewer than 1,000 adverse action reports over nearly a decade serves for all practical purposes as non-reporting," the report said.

The report covered a decade when HMOs and other managed care providers became the foremost source of medical care in the United States.


"Ultimately, patients who go to these doctors are going to be injured or harmed because they are going to people who are known to have committed some act of negligence," said Dr. Sidney Wolfe, director of consumer group Public Citizen's Health Research Group.

"It's just another horrendous example of how various parts of our health care system are cheating the reporting requirements of the National Practitioner Data Bank."

The report said some managed care organizations had failed to make quality assurance a priority, adding that "in a health care marketplace that has been changing rapidly, many managed care organizations devote little attention to clinical oversight."

Susan Pisano, vice president for communications for the American Association of Health Plans, which represents more than 1,000 HMOs and other managed care firms, said her group asked HHS officials on May 15 to clarify whether the industry actually was obligated to report doctors to the data base.

She said her group believed the industry was obligated to report doctors only to the appropriate state medical board.

"The plans take the reporting obligations very seriously," she said. "It's a question of the requirements being unclear."

But Wolfe countered, "Their excuse is that they depend on the medical boards, but they themselves, the HMOs, obviously have a requirement to be reporting to the data bank, not just reporting to the medical boards, particularly when they know that the medical boards vary enormously in quality and that in many states sending something to the medical board is like sending it into the sewer."



Send mail to 2nd with questions or comments about this web site.

Copyright © 2000-2001 ProGuns


Click Here to apply for this award for your site. Shape history - Today will be yesterday come tomorrow...

*** Hear Ye... Hear Ye... This site has been presented with the "Great Historical Site Award"! It has preserved history for all through the documentation and links contained herein. ***

This site is best viewed with an open mind and a sense of patriotism. Please set your resolution to defending the Constitution of the United States of America.

"This web site may contain copyrighted material and may link to copyrighted material. It is presented here under the "fair use" provisions of the US copyright laws, solely for the purpose of discussion and critique. No commercial use is intended or permitted. If you are the owner of one of these copyrights and you disagree with the use of this material, please contact me at the email link posted on this page, and a resolution will be arranged promptly. "