I know this situation happens often: someone recommends or refers you to a new physician, and you want to know what kind of person they are. You wonder, is Dr. Smith, Neurologist in Blacksburg / Christiansburg Virginia a good doctor? How long has he been practicing?
So you “Google” the doctor’s name and the first thing that pops up is a pay site that offers you a complete profile of the doctor for the low low price of $9.99.
I won’t begrudge someone the opportunity to make a few dollars, but you can do a FREE search that will also provide a great deal of useful information on any Virginia physician.
1. Go to the Virginia Department of Medicine’s website and learn about your physician’s education, board certifications, practice area, and past lawsuits.
2. Look in local court records to see if there are pending lawsuits. Now I will be the first to admit that the mere fact there is a pending lawsuit, does not mean ANYTHING. But I would be curious if there were multiple suits filed against a physician in a year or two.
Find your City / County on the scroll. Click CIVIL and then type in last name.
I do think information is power and if you want to know a little bit about a physician in Virginia before you put your trust in them, it only takes a few minutes.
If they have lost their license, been sanctioned, lost hospital privileges, been sued – you can know with very little effort.
I have too often asked clients in the New River Valley and Roanoke Valley, “Why did you go to see Dr. X? Did you know that Dr. X lost his license last year for six months?” Sadly, no one told them how to investigate physicians and now they are suffering from extreme pain as a result of a physician’s negligence. Not all medical malpractice can be avoided by simply choosing your doctors carefully, but I would want to know if the person operating on my knee had done it before!
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