Going To The Doc? Be Sure You Don't Sign A Gag Order

Man, those online review websites sure can be harsh. Some doctors think they’re totally unfair! That’s why a neurosurgeon in North Carolina has started a business called Medical Justice. The Associated Press says the company provides waiver forms for docs to give to patients. If you sign it, and then post a review online that can be traced back to you, the doctor can use your signed form as proof that it must be removed.

RateMDs.com says it’s planning on creating a “Wall of Shame” that will list all the doctors who are known to use the Medical Justice waivers—around 2,000 so far, according to Medical Justice.

John Swapceinski, co-founder of RateMDs.com, said that in recent months, six doctors have asked him to remove negative online comments based on patients’ signed waivers. He has refused.

“They’re basically forcing the patients to choose between health care and their First Amendment rights, and I really find that repulsive,” Swapceinski said.

Frankly, the whole thing sounds like a racket that doctors would be wise to avoid, both for the reputation ding it entails and the general waste of money.

If you feel you need to share your experiences about a health care provider, or anyone else for that matter, be sure to review this post on how not to get sued for what you write online. And then type away like nobody’s business.

“Docs seek gag orders to stop patients’ reviews” [MSNBC] (Thanks to Melissa!)
(Photo: Ubi Desperare Nescio)