By J. Michael Orms, MD
East Texas Medical Center
As a doctor, I advocate for my patients learning the full story about the drugs or healthcare products I recommend. I want them to be as informed as possible, armed with the most complete picture of their treatment, so they can make an informed choice. This is why personal injury lawyer advertising bothers me so deeply.
These ubiquitous ads often contain misleading or outright false information, and too many people take them at face value, which can create anxiety over treatments and or even cause them to make poor medical decisions. These ads have one purpose, and it is to scare people into filing lawsuits that will make the lawyers rich. The information they provide is not credible health information, and it cannot be trusted.
It can be hard for people to discern the true motivation behind these ads, especially if they are scared into thinking that every treatment is dangerous. Personal injury lawyers are not medical professionals, and their ads don’t have to be based on any research. In fact, they don’t even have any responsibility to prove what they are saying is true.
That’s why they run these ads – to scare helpless people who don’t know better or attract individuals so greedy that they’ll lie to make a few bucks. If it were up to me, these ads would be forced to educate consumers about how much, or any, of their claims are based on fact. The bottom line is that consumers should take health information only from medical professionals – not lawyers.