If Florida's Supreme Court can't speak tort reform, perhaps the state's medical and legal leaders can

LETTER — Posted Dec. 25, 2006

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Regarding "Medical liability: Florida voters speak, but no one listens" (Editorial, Nov. 20): I can only concur that the Florida Supreme Court let down the citizens of this state as well as the physicians. To strike down, in all effect, a constitutional amendment approved by a majority of the citizens to limit legal fees in a malpractice case is a slap in the face of our constitutional right to amend the state laws.

It was recently announced that the Florida Medical Assn. president is working with the Florida Bar Assn. president to form a joint committee to explore issues of mutual concern that cause tension between the medical and legal communities in Florida. I would suggest a meeting to discuss alternatives to the present civil court system for settling claims of medical malpractice.

Isn't it time to create an administrative court with judges who have professional knowledge of the issues instead of lay juries providing judgments based on their emotions as much as the science of the matter? With more efficient courts and more reasonable settlements, the financial burden of medical malpractice will be reduced and distributed better to the victims who have suffered the injuries. Anything less is trying to tread water in quicksand.

William Voltaire Choisser, MD, Orange Park, Fla.

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2006/12/25/edlt1225.htm.

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