NY patient safety bill will name doctors charged with misconduct

A new patient safety bill signed into law yesterday by New York Governor David Paterson will require that the names of doctors charged with misconduct be made public. Infection control was a key piece of the bill because of the case of Dr. Harvey Finkelstein, a doctor whose failure to follow infection control procedures exposed a number of his patients to hepatitis C. 

Finkelstein, a pain-management doctor who treated patients from his Plainview office, infected at least one patient with hepatitis C by reusing syringes in multi-dose vials. More than 10,000 patients were eventually notified of possible exposure to tainted syringes. The bill allows the names of doctors formally charged by the state's Board of Medical Professional Conduct to be made public if the three-person panel--two doctors and a lay member--vote to do so unanimously.

For more info:
- read the Newsday story