Web site lists state's disciplined doctors

New Jersey’s Today's Sunbeam
Sunday, May 25, 2003

A non-profit public interest group last week unmasked the names of 1,105 New Jersey doctors disciplined for various offenses, though area doctors contend the report is a red herring for proposed medical liability reform.

During a telephone press conference, Dr. Sidney Wolfe, health research group director of Washington, D.C.-based Public Citizen, said it's only fair to allow consumers access to information about physicians in their area.

"It's a rebellion against the secrecy," Wolfe said of the Web site www.questionabledoctors.org, which lists disciplinary information for doctors in 30 states. "Patients may decide ... that they still want to go to the doctor, but they may be more cautious. We think people have the right to decide." 


John Shaffer, Medical Society of New Jersey spokesman, challenged Public Citizen's announcement in the wake of statewide medical liability reform.


In addition, Shaffer said since individuals must pay $10 for each disciplinary report sought, Public Citizen does not truly have consumers' best interests in mind.

Joanne Doroshow, Center for Justice and Democracy spokeswoman, agreed that reports should be free, but said individuals should have access to "problems" doctors have experienced in the past.

"I think that one of the reasons there's so much malpractice in this country is that people don't have information," Doroshow said. "It will ... create pressure on medical societies to do more to sanction and suspend."
For a copy of the complete article, contact CJ&D. .

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