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Illinois House Passes Patients' Right to Know Act

February 22, 2011

In a move to help patients protect themselves from doctors with blemished records such as a criminal conviction or a recent malpractice payout, the Illinois House has passed the Patients' Right to Know Act. This bill is aimed at providing the public with the information that they may interested in knowing before visiting a medical care provider. The new requirements put forward by this bill could potentially protect them from visiting a doctor that might be a fraud or a criminal.

This law is aimed at making sure that patients have access to imperative information that may help them to avoid a malpractice mishap when they initially decide to research a doctor. A Chicago medical malpractice lawyer urges patients to research a new doctor or surgeon as extensively as possible in order to obtain as much information about them and their practice as possible.

This bill has pitted lobbyists for the doctors up against patient' advocates throughout the state. Right now, patients can access the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation's Web site in order to learn whether or not the department has taken any disciplinary action against a physician while they were practicing. However, the proposed bill would mandate that this governmental regulatory agency post a significantly increased amount of information about individual physicians on their site.

The new bill would require that the public have access to information about a doctor being fired, any criminal convictions against them, and also information about any malpractice payments that they have paid out during the past five years. By further including this additional information on the department' website it would make it easier for people to access facts that may influence their decision to visit a physician.

One of the biggest opponents to the passage of this bill is the Illinois State Medical Society. They have helped bills similar to the Patients' Right to Know Act to be defeated in the past. This bill will now be left in the hands of the Illinois Senate to be voted upon.

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