Malpractice cases drop, but views on why differ

From the Des Moines Register:

Iowa patients are suing their doctors for malpractice half as often as they used to, which has helped drive down malpractice-insurance premiums for many physicians.

Doctors speculate that malpractice lawsuits are becoming rarer because they have cut down on medical mistakes. But plaintiffs’ lawyers say they’re filing fewer cases because it’s become more expensive to press lawsuits.

Despite the decline in cases, the two sides continue to debate whether malpractice lawsuits help drive up health care costs.

Australian Paramedics Want Pool Cues Banned from Pubs

From JEMS:

Queensland’s ambulance officers want licensed venues to stop using pool cues and glass ashtrays to reduce the risk of being assaulted.

Last year the State Government banned glasses from some pubs and clubs to stop so-called “glassing” attacks.

Now the union representing Queensland’s ambulance officers says pool cues and glass ashtrays have become a “weapon of choice” for drunken patrons who turn on paramedics.

Maryland Woman Bitten by Cobra; Assistant Curator Responds with Anti-Venom

From JEMS:

It was a strange story from start to finish, but the Philadelphia Zoo helped steer things toward a happy ending. A woman told fire department emergency responders in Baltimore that she was getting into her car at a shopping-center parking lot Sunday night when she was bitten on the hand by a cobra, which she had picked up thinking it was a stick.

The woman, who officials didn’t identify, apparently got the snake into a bag and brought it with her to a walk-in medical center, where it was isolated in a trash can, said Baltimore Fire Department spokeswoman Elise Amacost. Fire department personnel rushed the woman from the clinic to Johns Hopkins Hospital.