The Law: Doctors' Counterattack

Fed up with the rising number of medical malpractice suits filed against them, doctors in Illinois have begun to launch legal counterattacks. With advice from their state medical society, which has set up a $500,000 malpractice war chest, four Illinois physicians have filed suits of their own against patients and their lawyers who are suing them.

One of the cases involves Dr. Eugene R. Balthazar, the founder of a highly regarded free clinic in Aurora, Ill. (TIME, Jan. 26), who was accused of malpractice by a woman treated for a facial malignancy. Though the patient's suit was tossed out of court, Balthazar...