Why do you have to pay a doctor if they misdiagnose or can't diagnose your problem?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    Because medicine is not an exact science... That is why it is referred to as practicing medicine.

    The same amount of time, and often more, is invested by the professional that you have seen. At least if the physician is good, that is. And remember, you are the one who decides upon which doctor you visit.

    If you call a service man to repair your furnace, and he comes and spends two hours trying to repair it, but finds it beyond repair, he should still be compensated for his work. He certainly didn't benefit from the time spent working on your furnace, and in the end you provide compensation for his expert opinion. Maybe it can't be fixed, but in the end, you would not have known that without him. It is the same way a doctor and his patient.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    This question would not have been asked thirty years ago.

    When you consult a physician, you are not going to buy an x-ray, or a prescription, or a diagnosis, in the way that you would go to a store and buy a product. You cannot expect to drive through at the hospital and have them ask,"Do you want fries with that?". The physician's fee is payment for his time and professional expertise.

    I might mention here that in speaking of the three classic professions--medicine, law, and clergy--the meaning of the word "profession" is somewhat different from the usual and simple difinition that's used when speaking, for instance, of professional athletes. This was once generally understood, but seems sadly lacking in modern society.

  • 1 decade ago

    If they misdiagnose, depending on what it is, you maybe could label it as malpractice. You're always recommended to get second opinions... If they can't diagnose, I don't know. I think when you sign the forms you are agreeing to make payment for the services rendered, even if its just an exam and no diagnosis.

  • 1 decade ago

    As ARCHANGEL hinted at in her answer, you are basically paying for his expertise, regardless of whether he can do anything for you or not. You pay more for specialists--whether a doctor or plumber or Mercedes mechanic--because of their training or their long experience. If they misdiagnose, and there's no harm done, forget it; learn from your mistake. Even if some harm results, I would be careful to sue, as such actions cause doctors' malpractice rates to skyrocket. And they react to that by either moving to where it's cheaper to practice medicine or raising their rates, neither of which is good for us--the patients.

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