Snyder signs bill for MDs who express sympathy

LANSING (AP) -- Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed legislation aimed at providing some legal protection to medical providers who express sympathy or compassion to patients or their families.

The Republican governor approved a bill Tuesday that says a statement conveying sympathy related to pain, suffering or death can't be used as evidence of admitting liability in a medical malpractice suit.

Many other states have enacted the so-called "I'm sorry" laws. Supporters say the laws allow and encourage better dialogue between doctors and patients, including difficulties related to diagnosis.

The law would not apply to a statement of negligence or culpable conduct that is part of or made in addition to a statement of sympathy.

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The legislation is Senate Bill 53.

Published: Thu, Apr 21, 2011