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It is little wonder that many Pennsylvania residents can become distressed when the trust that exists between a doctor and a patient is broken. Patients rightfully expect the utmost degree of professionalism when they place their lives in the hands of their doctors. A recent article has indicated, though, that filing a medical malpractice suit against a doctor one suspects may be negligent is no longer a simple affair.

According to the report, the total number of medical malpractice cases in Pennsylvania continues to drop every year. Through 2000 and 2003, the average number of malpractice suits was around 2,700. In 2012, the total was almost half that with the number of malpractice suits barely surpassing 1,500. 

The report suggests that the cause for the decrease was an alteration of the state's malpractice laws. One of the changes requires the individual making the claim to acquire a document from a physician verifying that the accused medical personal did in fact act in a negligible manner. Another modification to the law was that a claim must be limited to the county in which it occurred in order to prevent biased hearings.

These changes to the Pennsylvania medical malpractice laws were put in effect to protect doctors who may have been unfairly accused by disgruntled patients or scammers. However, they can also make it much harder for an individual that has truly been the victim of medical malpractice to successfully file a claim against a negligent doctor. Any person that genuinely feels their doctor has acted in an irresponsible fashion may want to determine how some of these rules and regulations can affect their own case before proceeding further.

Source: Renal and Urology News, "Malpractice Filings Drop in Pennsylvania," Ann W. Latner, June 21, 2013

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