American Medical Association issues guidelines for specialty courts

Since 2003, the American Medical Association has been pushing for the creation of specialty courts that would hear only medical malpractice cases. These alternative courts proposed by the AMA would consist of judges with special training in medical standards. In addition, the health courts proposed by the AMA would cap non-economic damages according to a predetermined schedule, following the model of the caps on non-economic damages in California. The AMA’s report states that medical liability insurance premiums have remained low in California and touts the state’s recovery caps as a success. However, the report does not indicate whether patients in California are receiving a level of care equivalent to other states that do not have statutory caps.

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