In the wake of the Ohio Supreme Court's decision in Stewart v. Vivian, physicians around the country are paying more attention to the "apology laws" in their state. In a recent article written by a physician for the Huffington Post, he advises that "it would be prudent for a physician expressing sympathy, condolence, or an apology, to pick his words carefully." This is because there are 30 states that partially protect apologies from being admitted as evidence, but there are now 8 states, including Ohio, that offer full protection to apologies.
Earlier this week, the Ohio Supreme Court continued its decade-long campaign to protect doctors at the expense of injured patients. First it was the arbitrary "caps" on damages, heightened pleading standards, and shortened statute of limitations. Now, doctors can even admit they were negligent, tell you exactly how they were negligent, and explain why it should not have happened, yet simply couple all those statements with an apology for the court to deem those statements inadmissible.