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Florida cracking down on negligent medical professionals

After several years of being ranked among a handful of states that have the fewest serious penalties against doctors, Florida is getting tough on doctors who are negligent. In the past two years already, disciplinary actions against doctors have risen significantly. The crackdown is focusing on doctors who commit medical malpractice leading to death.

State regulators are determined to revoke licenses from doctors who commit a medical crime. In the past, a doctor accused of malpractice or other misdeeds could continue to practice and see patients during an investigation. Under the leadership of a new health secretary, however, doctors may now have their licenses suspended during that time to ensure no other patients are harmed.

The movement to suspend licenses quickly is focused on a few serious offenses for now. Some of these offenses include: malpractice leading to death, drug use, pain-pill abuse, and sexual or physical assaults on patients.

So far, the enforcement of these penalties only seems to be centered on obvious problems in a medical community. Some claim the penalties are not tough enough on medical staff who exhibit incompetence.

For several years, Florida has been criticized for being too lenient on doctors and other health professionals who break the law. The fact is that people can be seriously hurt or killed at the hands of a negligent doctor. One who is permitted to see and treat patients may continue to jeopardize other people's lives.

A person who has been hurt at the hands of a medical professional has the right to seek financial compensation for any damages that result from negligence. Whether or not the state immediately suspends that doctor's license, a patient may still file a claim against the doctor.

Source: Sun Sentinel, "State tries to get tough on lawbreaking medical practitioners," Bob LaMendola and Alexia Campbell, Jan. 22, 2012

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