Dr. Eric Rice fought long and hard on behalf of his deceased daugther, and Tuesday he succeeded in changing Wisconsin law.
That’s because Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle signed a bill Tuesday that eliminates the need to notify the state within 180 days if a malpractice suit is planned against a government health care provider. http://www.wisjustice.org/WI/index.cfm?event=showPage&pg=180DayBillsigned
Dr. Rice, a Middleton resident, lost his daughter Erin in 1999 and soon learned of the 180-day notice, which he felt was unfair. His spearheaded a fight to change it, with the goal that Wisconsin families should be afforded fair and equal treatment under the law, regardless of which hospital or health care provider is used.
Simply put, the new law basically means that government health care providers will now be subject to the same statutes of limitations for medical malpractice as privately run health systems. The new law is expected to be effective in about two weeks.
The legislation was sponsored by Sen. Fred Risser, D-Madison, and Rep. David Cullen, D-Milwaukee. They are to be congratulated on behalf of Wisconsin’s citizens.
The Wisconsin Association for Justice lauded the legislation, saying, “The new law will be of great benefit to citizens of this state who use University of Wisconsin health facilities or other state or local government health care providers. By eliminating the need to file notice of a malpractice suit within 180 days, more people who have been harmed or wronged will be able to seek justice and restitution for their injuries.”
More than a decade after her death, Dr. Rice won one for Erin.
“Measures such as this help protect the citizens of Wisconsin and continue to make the Badger state a wonderful place to live and work,” the Wisconsin justice association said.