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Will My Health Care Providers Tell Me If A Mistake Has Been Made?

In our experience, health care providers rarely disclose that a medical mistake or negligence occurred. This is true even for health care providers who become involved in patient care after the mistake or negligence has already occurred. As a result, medical records often need to be obtained in order to determine what happened. In 2005, Virginia passed a law that encouraged expressions of sympathy and fault on the part of health care providers by making such expressions inadmissible at trial. Despite this law, our experience still remains that health care providers rarely disclose medical mistakes. The District of Columbia does not have a law similar to Virginia's.