The results of a recent analysis of reports made to the National Practitioner Data Bank (“NPDB”) regarding medical professionals in Ohio found that the rate of disciplinary actions against Ohio medical professionals has increased by 500% since 1990: in 1990, there were 429 disciplinary actions reported to the NPDB – in 2014, 2,210 reports were filed with the NPDB.
Despite the 500% increase in disciplinary actions reported to the NPDB for Ohio medical professionals from 1990 to 2014, the number of medical malpractice claims in Ohio hit a seven-year low in 2012, likely due to the onerous medical malpractice reforms implemented in Ohio beginning in 2002, which include a cap (limit) on noneconomic damages in medical malpractice claims and other restrictions and burdens imposed on Ohio medical malpractice victims.
The important question that begs an answer for anyone who receives any type of medical care or any type of medical treatment in Ohio is whether the quality of medical care provided to Ohioans since medical malpractice reforms have been implemented has improved or deteriorated, especially in light of the enormous increase in the reported disciplinary actions involving Ohio medical professionals: is there a correlation between the increased and broadened financial and other protections afforded negligent Ohio medical providers (at the expense of innocent medical malpractice victims) and the increasingly disciplined medical community?
NPDB Adverse Actions Reporting Requirements
The NPDB collects information and maintains reports applying to health care practitioners, health care entities, and other providers and suppliers based on the laws and regulations that govern the NPDB, regarding the following: medical malpractice payments; federal and state licensure and certification actions; adverse clinical privileges actions; adverse professional society membership actions; negative actions or findings by private accreditation organizations and peer review organizations; health care-related criminal convictions and civil judgments; exclusions from participation in a federal or state health care program, including Medicare and Medicaid exclusions; and, other adjudicated actions or decisions.
There are sanctions for failing to report to the NPDB: a medical malpractice payer that fails to report medical malpractice payments is subject to a civil monetary penalty up to $11,000 for each medical malpractice payment not reported; a hospital or other health care entity that substantially fails to report adverse actions will have its name published in the Federal Register and will lose its immunity from liability under Title IV with respect to professional review activities, for a period of three years, beginning thirty days from the date of publication in the Federal Register; a professional society that substantially fails to report adverse membership actions can lose immunity from liability provided under Title IV for a period of three years; a health plan that fails to report information on an adverse action required to be reported to the NPDB is subject to a civil penalty up to $25,000 for each adverse action not reported; and, the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is required to publish a report that identifies government agencies that have failed to report information on adverse actions as required by law. Any state medical board or state dental board that fails to submit reports of adverse actions can have the responsibility to report removed by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
If you or a loved one suffered harm as a result of possible medical negligence in Ohio or in another U.S. state, you should promptly find an Ohio medical malpractice lawyer, or a local medical malpractice lawyer in your state, who may investigate your medical malpractice claim for you and represent you in a medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
Turn to us when you don’t know where to turn.