Amendment 7: A Survey Of Florida Risk Managers

A research initiative of the University of Florida J. Hillis Miller Health Center Self-Insurance Program
with support from the Florida Society of Healthcare Risk Management and Patient Safety (FSHRMPS)
This November will mark the ten-year anniversary of the passage
of a “Patients’ Right-to-Know About Adverse Medical Incidents
Act,” commonly referred to “Amendment 7” . Originally devised as
an intimidation tactic by Florida trial lawyers against physicians
seeking tort reform, the carefully worded ballot initiative was
promoted as a consumer information tool and overwhelmingly
passed by Florida voters. Hospital risk managers were surveyed in
2013 to authenticate the source of these requests and learn what
resources are required to process responses.
• Evaluate the typical amount of time required by
hospitals to respond to Amendment 7 requests.
• Learn to what extent facilities use legal counsel
when responding to Amendment 7 requests.
• Gain the perspective of Florida risk managers on
what is precipitating Amendment 7 requests and
how it is being used by Floridians.
• Confirmation and explanatory contact was made with
218 hospital risk managers to participate in the
amendment 7 survey with respondent names being kept
confidential with only aggregate data used.
• Qualtrics online research survey technology was used to
create a short, 13-multiple-choice question survey with
one additional narrative comment question.
• 3 follow-up notices were sent to those who did not
respond within 10 days, and thank you emails were sent
to all participants.
Amendment 7 is categorically not being used as a consumer
information tool. Out of 767 reported Amendment 7 requests, only 3
to 12 were not associated with litigation. Respondents reported the
consumer information requests they received were in the form of calls
from patients requesting records shortly after the amendment’s
passage, but none in the past several years. Some were news media
Survey Results
*95% level of certainty with a margin of error of +/-7.96%)
• 182 E-surveys sent.
• 45.6% survey response rate encompassing 83
facilities in 27 counties, representing 38% of acute
care facilities in Florida.
• 767 Amendment 7 requests received by
respondent facilities.
• Less than one percent of Amendment 7 requests
have come from patients interested in selecting
prospective health care services or who are
interested in health care services they are
currently receiving.
• 88% of respondents received at least one
Amendment 7 request in litigation.
• 86% of respondents routinely engage outside legal
counsel in responding to Amendment 7 requests.
• 79% of respondents have received Amendment 7
requests annually since 2004.
• 98% reported that all (100%) of their Amendment
7 requests stemmed from or resulted in litigation.
Phillip M. Cox II, Esq. Associate Director, Patient Safety
Research and Education, Florida Board of Governors
Self-Insurance Programs; Jan Rebstock, RHIT, LHRM,
CPHRM, Coordinator, Patient Safety Research and
Education, Florida Board of Governors Self- Insurance
Programs; Matthew A. Goodwin, Juris Doctor
Candidate University of Florida College of Law 2014,
President , University of Florida College of Law Health
Care Law Society.

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