The Pros And Cons Of Good Samaritan Laws

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There is some concern among physicians and other medical personnel in circumstances dealing with Good Samaritan laws; healthcare professionals are still fearful of being liable even with these laws enacted (Sutton, 2010, p. 261). As stated in Chapter 1 of Medical Law and Ethics (p. 64), Good Samaritan laws are state laws established to protect professionals in healthcare from being liable in emergency situations. In certain cases, the act of implementing a beneficial law or the like such as creating Good Samaritan laws, have pitfalls and loopholes that prevent positive outcomes. Many healthcare professionals are deterred from rescuing individuals in accident and emergency situations because Good Samaritan laws have been left vague, vary…show more content…
305). By 1964, only five years after California enacted a Good Samaritan law, thirty-one states follow with similar protection for physicians (Brant, 1983, p. 306). However, the new law did not encourage more doctors to help at the scene of an accident or emergency. Of the doctors who participated in a 1971 survey, fifty percent of those doctors said they would stop at the scene of an accident even though their state lacked a Good Samaritan statute (Brant, 1983, p. 306-307). More shocking, the same doctors were surveyed again after their states had established Good Samaritan laws and only forty-nine percent claimed they would stop at the scene of an accident (Brant, 1983, p. 306-307). Even after the enactment of Good Samaritan laws, physicians were not more likely to provide care at the scene of an accident. In today’s society, for example, vascular surgeons are often called in emergency situations to help control bleeding patients, but because they are not at work or on call and have no legal obligation to help, some vascular surgeons refuse to provide care for the fear of a lawsuit (Brown,

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