Friday, June 04, 2010

The real facts behind the McDonald's coffee case

While at my obstetric appointment, being told I needed an ultrasound for no reason other than that I'm pregnant, the infamous McDonald's Coffee Case came up. The point was that people will sue for anything and scanning all fetuses regardless of need or cause or even the mother's wishes is just what doctors have to do in this litigious society.
A couple weeks later I had a friend tell me that tort reform is more important to keeping medical costs down than insurance reform because, after all, people sue when their coffee is too hot.
Today a friend of mine posted on facebook a link to an article about a woman who googled directions for a walk, wandered down the middle of a road, got hit by a car, and is now suing google. My friends comment: And coffee is hot, too.

All this crap pisses me off. It's very easy to hear some radio DJ mock a lady for suing McDonald's because her coffee burned her, but do they realize that McDonald's knowingly set their holding temp for coffee to 185`, hot enough to cause third degree burns to the lips, mouth, and throat at the very first sip? Do they know that the woman who sued tried to settle in the beginning but McDonald's told her they had more lawyers and could afford to wait her out? Or that the coffee didn't just burn her lap but actually melted her genital and anal regions, requiring 8 days of skin grafting? Nah, all they know is that some lady spilled her coffee, got burned, and sued McDonald's. After all, what point does fact have in a hyperbolic example anyway?

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