Denver Post Examines Colorado’s Reluctance To Disclose Physician Profiles
While many states are beginning to provide consumers with more information on physicians' disciplinary records, including online registries of malpractice and criminal histories, similar efforts in Colorado have been thwarted by the medical establishment, the Denver Post reports. To date, 15 states, including California, have passed laws mandating more disclosure, yet the state's medical establishment "zealously protects physician privacy," the Post reports. The Colorado Board of Medical Examiners records the details of medical malpractice cases and judgments, but the information is confidential under state law unless it leads to disciplinary action. The board's Web site only lists physicians' licensing information, phone numbers, address and past disciplinary history. Similar sites in states such as Massachusetts contain physician profiles that detail malpractice judgments and settlements, criminal convictions and losses of operating privileges. Consumer groups, trial lawyers and some lawmakers want consumers to have access to more information, but the medical community maintains that too much disclosure could lead to excessive lawsuits (McGhee, Denver Post, 10/6). For more iHealth & Technology stories, visit iHealthBeat.org, a new Web publication sponsored by the California HealthCare Foundation.This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.