Dispatch: Defensive Medicine

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A study released Tuesday by the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes shows that about 24% of 600 cardiologists surveyed admitted to ordering unnecessary heart tests in order to avoid litigation.

“That’s about one out of four, and that’s just the ones that admit it,” says Dr. Ross. “Furthermore, this is just cardiologists. Think of how many other doctors in other specialties are trying to protect themselves from lawsuits by ordering unnecessary tests. We already know that defensive medicine accounts for billions in needless health expenditures every year, and tort reform would help minimize the burden of those expenditures.”