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Ben Glass
Ben Glass
Attorney • (703) 584-7277

Low Ranking for Virginia Hospitals

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My friend, Roanoke medical malpractice attorney Jeff Krasnow, has astutely pointed out a new report that shows that Virginia’s hospitals rank low on a national scale. Jeff says in his blog, Roanoke Personal Injury Lawyer:

One very troubling aspect of the new Health Grade studies which reports 250,000 Medicare patients killed by preventable medical mistakes during the three years, is the performance of Virginia hospitals. Among the 50 states, Virginia’s hospitals were ranked 39th. West Virginia, by comparison, was ranked 17th. Only four Virginia hospitals were included on the list of best-performing hospitals for overall patient safety.

Jeff”s right. While the vast majority of physicians I know do a terrific job, the fact that our hospitals received such a low ranking may be due to the fact that Virginia’s malpractice laws are among the most restrictive in the country.

One of the purposes of “tort” or “negligence” law is to make things safer. The more difficult it is for a patient to recover damages in a medical malpractice lawsuit the less incentive any defendant, including Virginia’s hospitals, have to get better at delivering quality patient care.