It will get an overhaul... ...when hospitals start doing it. If hospitals are excluded from doing so, private practice docs (essentially sole proprietors) will start doing it. Other options include dentists, construction contractors, airlines, etc. Then the outcry will be loud enough for things to change.
The problem is that when every business I the industry does this, there is only one choice left for the consumer
submit or dont use the entire industry. They are very well aware that uniform inclusion of arbitration provisions throughout the industry helps each and every one of them. I dont doubt there is some collusion to move in that direction. If not, it shouldnt take long for everyone in a given industry to realize the benefit of including such provisions. This is particularly apparent when there are few choices in an industry to begin with, such as phone and cable.
The trend is very clear. I have seen mandatory arbitration clauses in everything from credit cards, to vacation packages, to furniture companies, and it will just continue. The businesses dont have to worry about you going elsewhere, once everyone else is doing it too. After all, its in their inclusive best interest.
There really needs to be some change in the federal arbitration act to give back some protections to consumers. Again and as will most things, this may not happen until it gets absolutely ridiculous.