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Aging doctors are not tested for competence

Patients across Illinois and the country are being treated by doctors who are older and older. In fact, the Chicago Tribune reports that a quarter of all doctors are age 65 or older. With the population increasing in age, many worry that patients could be in the wrong hands.

A report prepared for the 2015 meeting of the American Medical Association noted that while airline pilots and many in the military are forced to retire at age 65 in order to protect from mistakes more likely in older age, there are no such rules for doctors. Some hospitals perform their own competency exams for doctors who are growing older, but there is not any regulation regarding the testing of doctors, and the report believed that should be changed. But the debate, which has been around for a couple of decades, remains ongoing. 

Reuters reports that a story published by JAMA Surgery in July renewed the calls for developing a protocol to ensure that older doctors are still working at their best level. While some studies have linked patient death with older surgeons, but doctors cannot agree on what age is the correct one to begin testing. Others say there is not an accurate enough test in place to measure doctor competency. Competency tests in aging Americans have found that doctors lose their ability at a slower rate than those in the average population. But with time, even doctors begin to feel the effects of the years on their abilities. Patients, in the meantime, could be harmed by this lack of regulation, especially in surgery.

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    I was struck by a car while cycling and severely, almost fatally injured. A team of excellent medical professionals performed complicated and extensive surgical and medical procedures as part of a successful effort to restore my health....-Jeff D.

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    We found Mark [Mathys] through the web after an auto accident in October 2011. While selecting someone you don't know to represent you can be a gamble, we could not have made a better choice....- Dave

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    Mark [Mathys] is very professional. He responds almost immediately, via email, to any question, comment or concern I have and if he is not able to respond right away, he will let me know. I have been very satisfied with Mark so far and I am happy to be his client.-Jennifer

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    Mr. Mathys and Mr. Schneid were very professional and easy to talk to. Prior to working with them, my wife and I had no real experience with the legal system beyond a house closing, yet Mr. Mathys and Mr. Schneid explained the whole process to us very well. I knew that whenever I had a concern about our case or the legal system in general I could call their office or send an email and receive answers the same day...-Larry

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    I've dealt with attorneys on a variety of issues, almost all of them since leaving college and entering the workplace. Mr. Mathys was the first attorney I had any real experience with, and I was impressed then and remain so. He provided very wise advice and always kept me informed. In the end, he delivered a favorable result. I recommend him highly.- Tyler D.

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    Mark [Schneid] is an excellent and skilled attorney and demonstrated in-depth knowledge of the law when he helped settle my dog bite lawsuit resulting from a traumatic incident. He explained what was needed of me and how I should handle the situation in a professional manner.- Karen K.

  • "They went to bat for me"

    Not long ago I was involved in a car accident where I was hit by a gravel truck at an intersection. After I called Mathys & Schneid, even though I didn't have a very large case, they made me feel like I was one of their most important cases. They went to bat for me with the trucking company's insurance and got me a settlement. I would definitely recommend them to my family and friends.-Dan H.

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