Hawaii is one of the worst states when it comes to keeping patients informed about bad doctors. It has one of the lowest ratings in the nation. If patients don’t have access to this valuable information, how can they trust a medical provider? There is no way to know if a potential doctor was put on probation for misconduct, committed medical malpractice or got involved in criminal activity.
Patients are entitled to know if their doctor has been disciplined in the past but it is just too hard in Hawaii to find out if a doctor has a history of medical malpractice. Also, medical boards who are responsible to discipline these doctors may not be reliable. In other words, a doctor in Hawaii may be disciplined for misconduct but that doesn’t mean his or her license will be suspended. Some of these doctors are involved in drug and alcohol abuse, prescription of controlled substances, and many other dangerous practices. Other cases of misconduct may include sexual misconduct and a variety of inappropriate behavior.
The Medical Board in Hawaii makes it really difficult to access a doctor’s profile. They use language difficult to understand unless the user has some medical background. Unless you have your doctor’s license number, you won’t be able to find anything. Also, the Medical Board’s site doesn’t allow users to submit complaints online. They provide an easy explanation about how to handle the complaint process but the rest is science fiction.
You will only find basic information about your doctor in Hawaii. Even information about the physician’s specialty or licenses in other states will be omitted. Also, some information on the site may not be true or verified by the Board. Likewise, the doctor’s profile will not include complaints made by other patients and the outcome. This information should be available and included in the profile otherwise it is impossible to know how reliable a particular doctor’s health advice is.
Any disciplinary actions against a doctor taken by a hospital or the federal government is not posted on the profile. The disciplinary actions are listed back to ten years ago but it is not clear and it does not include evidence or a simple summary of these actions.
Some website improvements have been made in order to make it easier for consumers. However, doctors should be required to provide this information to their patients, especially if they are on probation. It is sad that only hospitals, doctors, law enforcement and other select groups have access to this information.
You have come to the right place. Our firm has decades of experience handling cases like yours. If you believe you have a case, call us today and schedule your initial case assessment with Hawaii medical malpractice attorney Jed Kurzban. You will never know unless you ask.