In the late 80s and early 90s there was a popular television show that featured a teen who swept through college and medical school to become a teen doctor. The show was filled with storylines about a doctor who could do things like prescribe medicine, but not enjoy an adult beverage with colleagues after work.
In a recently reported story, another teen was allegedly found practicing medicine in West Palm Beach. The difference? This teen did not have an M.D., nor was he legally practicing medicine according to authorities. Local police got wind of the teen doctor and began a two week sting operation to find out whether he was really practicing medicine and whether it was legal. An undercover police officer reportedly went to the teen’s clinic, and the teen allegedly offered to give him a medical exam and treatment. At that point, the teen was arrested for practicing medicine without a license.
In the young man’s defense, he never did put himself out as an M.D., but rather said he was a Ph.D, and a naturalist or homeopathic practitioner. According to the reports, he is going to defend his actions, and will have to do so to avoid the negative consequences that could happen.
License Required to Practice Medicine
Under Florida law, like most all other states, a person is required to have a license to practice medicine. If a person holds themselves out to the public as a doctor and practices medicine without a license, they would be guilty of a first degree misdemeanor. But the issue gets sticky when a person is simply providing homeopathic or natural remedies to help with other’s heath. And that is what this teen was claiming to do.
This issue brings up another question: can a homeopathic provider be sued for malpractice like a doctor? The answer is yes. Under Florida law, each of has a duty to act reasonably towards others. If a homeopathic provider injured someone by giving them unsafe supplements or advice, and the person was harmed, they would likely be held liable for the damages incurred.
Medical Malpractice in Florida
Because of the heightened licensing requirements and work they do, doctors are held to a high standard of care when they practice. This means that whey they make mistakes that hurt their patients, they will be held liable for the damage they cause. This can happen in a surgery, typical screening, or in a number of other ways.
Doctors are well compensated for the work they do. As a result, we expect that they not make mistakes that hurt patients. This is part of the reason why the state has such strict laws on licensing and ensuring that doctors are properly trained and vetted before they start practicing medicine on the public.
Panama City Area Medical Malpractice Attorney
If you or someone you love has been injured by a doctor or other healthcare provider, contact us. Our law firm is the go-to law firm for medical malpractice actions in the Panama City area. At The Pittman Firm we will go over your case with you and provide you the legal counsel your case deserves.
See related blog posts: Court Ruling Challenges Florida's Damages Cap; 11th Circuit Court of Appeals Rules on Doctor Gun Law.