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Health News Florida

New MedMal Defense Thrown Out

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A federal judge in Tallahassee has thrown out a medical-malpractice defense law passed this year that gave a  defense attorney the right to question the plaintiff's other doctors without permission, the Tampa Bay Times reports.

U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle issued a 17-page ruling that says such questioning -- called "ex parte" communication -- violates the federal statute that ensures patient privacy:  the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, better known as HIPAA.

Update: Florida Medical Association says it will help with any appeal, and hopes to see a different opinion from one of the other federal district courts that has a similar pending case.