In the face of “tort reform” and noneconomic damages caps, a jury awarded $4.1 million last Wednesday in a nursing home medical malpractice lawsuit. The jury awarded the money for pain, suffering, and other claims to the family of the victim who was found with bedsores, an undiagnosed hip fracture, and other problems. Awards of high damages are fueling a renewed effort in state legislatures to pass a bill capping damage awards. However, justice suffers when “tort reform” is pushed. The attorney for the plaintiff in this case stated that if wrongdoers cannot be punished financially, bad nursing homes and hospitals guilty of nursing home abuse and neglect and medical malpractice have little incentive to improve. He correctly stated “We don’t need tort reform. We need medical malpractice reform. We need nursing home reform.”
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