According to the most recent, readily available report, the New York State Department of Health’s Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC) received 9,073 medical misconduct complaints against New York medical professionals. Now, the OPMC is required to thoroughly review every complaint that is sent its way. However, it ultimately dismissed 7,082 of these 9,073 complaints, claiming that they did not constitute medical misconduct cases that required further investigation. Continue reading to learn what does and does not constitute a medical misconduct complaint and how one of the experienced OPMC/OPD misconduct defense lawyers at Walker Medical Law can step in when needed.
Who can bring a misconduct complaint forward?
History has proven that the majority of medical misconduct complaints received by the OPMC originate from the public; namely, that is patients, friends, and family members. The remaining complaints may be brought forward by the following groups:
- Health facilities (i.e., health maintenance organizations).
- Licensed health professionals (i.e., physicians, physician assistants, and specialist assistants).
- Plaintiffs pursuing medical malpractice claims.
- Insurers or insurance associations that are authorized to issue medical malpractice liability insurance.
In fact, it is not simply encouraged to submit a medical misconduct complaint. Rather, as per New York State law, it is often required for many of the groups mentioned above to report a medical professional they suspect may be guilty of such misconduct.
What instances do not constitute a medical misconduct complaint?
To reiterate, many medical misconduct complaints received by the OPMC are illegitimate and thereby dismissed before an investigation can even commence. Specifically with patient complaints, examples of instances that do not constitute such a claim are as follows:
- A patient’s complaint that their poor communication with a medical professional led to heightened health problems:
- A patient had a misunderstanding with the diagnosis they received.
- A patient had a misunderstanding with the treatments they were prescribed.
- A patient had a misunderstanding with the specialists they were referred to.
- A patient had a misunderstanding with the tests and services their health insurance was going to cover.
- A patient’s complaint that a medical professional charged too much for the tests and services they were administered.
- A patient’s complaint that a medical professional exhibited poor bedside manners or a lack of care when treating their health problems.
- A patient’s complaint that a medical professional employed a rude staff or had them wait too long before being seen for their appointment.
However, if the circumstances are severe enough, the complaints mentioned above may qualify as medical misconduct. For example, a patient may have not only felt that they were treated rudely but that they were also verbally or physically harassed by the medical professional and their employed staff.
Even if you just have a gut feeling that an illegitimate complaint will be placed against you, it is best to first consult with one of the skilled OPMC/OPD misconduct defense lawyers. So please contact us at Walker Medical Law today.