Gosnell

Gosnell, the movie about the raid and trial of Dr. Kermit Gosnell whom the police learned about while tracking down illegal drug prescription sales. When raiding Gosnell’s clinic they discover a filthy facility where illegal activity is taking place. Gosnell, who comes across as creepy at best, was discovered to be performing illegal late term abortions, killing babies who survived abortions and of manslaughter in the case of one woman.

The film could be a lot more graphic. It protects viewers from the gore, but it is a violent topic and Gosnell seemed to relish and horde the remains of his work.

Much of the film follows the lead police officer and attorney who prosecute Gosnell. An important subplot involves a young, hip blogger who’s the only journalist with an interest in the story. She become key to the prosecution. It was particularly interesting to see how this young woman was initially given the brush off, but once the lawyer and officer listen, they realize that she has gotten crucial evidence.

The film was initially conceived as a TV movie and has that look. Still the acting was capable. At times the dialog was rather artificial in the way that Hollywood screenwriting can be. Nonetheless, I appreciated this film about a news story I knew little about.

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At the Hospital

I just heard this from a friend at my book club. I was stunned.

He went to a local hospital for a blood test. Before the test, he had to sign a form. Rather than sign on the electronic device with a stylus, he asked to sign a paper version. When he read the form, he noticed that it said that by signing the form he gave up his right to sue the hospital, healthcare personnel or to join a class action suit.

He crossed out that wording, even though he doubted he’d sue. The woman at the desk said he couldn’t do that. After he disputed her, she told him that if he amended the form, the hospital would not submit his claim to his insurance company. He’d have to pay for the test himself.

He asked to see a manager. When he did the manager admitted that the hospital couldn’t refuse to submit a claim for the blood test to insurance, but that he just instructed his staff to tell people that. Thus the manager was telling his staff to lie to patients to compel people to give up their rights.

If you encounter such a requirement, know that you’re probably being hoodwinked.

My friend is planning to contact the nearest city newspaper. I hope people learn that they’re being lied to. Another woman at the book club shared that she went to a new doctor and was given a similar form and was told that if she didn’t sign a paper waiving her legal right to sue, the doctor wouldn’t see her.

I understand that doctors worry about law suits, baseless and not, but that’s been the case for decades and they do have insurance for malpractice. Yes, that can be expensive depending on the doctor’s speciality and other factors, but it’s part of doing business.

I just spoke with my brother, who’s a lawyer about this. He says these “I won’t sue” clauses aren’t enforceable. You can sue. Still this practice is deceptive.

I’d refuse to waive any rights.