Last year, Illinois lawmakers passed a comprehensive medical care reform bill that imposed a cap in medical malpractice cases. As explained at the PopTort, when that law was overturned as unconstitutional, a number of other beneficial medical malpractice regulatory laws that were included as part of the reform were scrapped as well due to a non-severability clause included in the original law:
(The lawmakers) added a non-severability clause to the law, so that if the cap were struck down (virtually certain as the Illinois Supreme Court had previously struck down two similar caps), all of those great medical malpractice insurance regulatory laws would be thrown out the window, leaving Illinois medical malpractice insurers virtually free to once again charge doctors excessive rates.
Recently, however, Illinois lawmakers reinstituted a helpful section of the law that will prove to be of great benefit to Illinois residents: an online physician database for medical consumers. In a Chicago Tribune article, this new database was described and its utility to consumers was explained:
Illinois patients can now research their doctors using an online database the state launched Wednesday…The database can be accessed through the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation’s website at idfpr.com under the “physician profile” link on the left side. There, patients can learn about a doctor’s educational background and training, determine what type of insurance they accept and find out what languages are spoken in the office.
Also included is information about criminal convictions, disciplinary action against the doctor by regulators in Illinois and other states, and whether hospital privileges have been revoked.
No doubt this new database is good news for Illinois residents. Now Illinoisans have a useful resource at their disposal that will help them make informed decisions when choosing a physician. And when it comes to making important medical decisions, it never hurts to have as much information as possible available for your consideration.