Professionally responsible malpractice reform

Howard Brody, Laura D. Hermer

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Medical malpractice reform is both necessary and desirable, yet certain types of reform are clearly preferable to others. We argue that "traditional" tort reform remedies such as stringent damage caps not only fail to address the root causes of negligence and the adverse effects that fear of suit can have on physicians, but also fail to address the needs of patients. Physicians ought to view themselves as professionals who are dedicated to putting patients' interests ahead of their own. Professionally responsible malpractice reform should therefore be at least as patient-centered as it is physician-centered. Examples of more professionally responsible malpractice reform exist where institutions take a pro-active approach to identification, investigation, and remediation of possible malpractice. Such programs should be implemented more generally, and state laws enacted to facilitate them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)806-809
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of general internal medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2011


  • Medical malpractice
  • Professionalism
  • Tort reform

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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