Massachusetts lawsuit accuses doctor of negligence in prescribing a patient’s medication

Patient Safety Monitor Insider

September 10, 2008

The liability of medical professionals may be broadened in a pending Massachusetts case, reports The Boston Globe. The case involves the widow of a doctor who was killed by a 77-year-old woman, Jane Berghold, who drove her car into a hospital. Berghold was taking heavy painkillers at the time for the chemotherapy she was undergoing and was unaware it might be unsafe to drive. The woman's lawyer would like her doctors to take responsibility for the crash, alleging that had she known the medication could make driving unsafe, she may not have been driving in the first place.

This is the second Massachusetts case related to physician liability in prescribing medications within a year. Doctors around the state worry that if the doctor is found liable, physicians will have to more closely consider who they take on as patients, not just which medications they should prescribe.

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