Leading up to Thursday’s bipartisan healthcare summit, the White House released the President’s Proposal on Healthcare Reform. The proposal includes many pieces of the House and Senate bills that have been debated over the last six months, however, the president did not include any medical malpractice revisions. This move by the president will protect the rights of patients across the country who may become the victims of preventable medical negligence. However, it is anticipated that the GOP will once again fight for the inclusion of tort reform in the bill.
As medical malpractice attorneys who represent victims of negligence, we continue to remind our readers to speak out against tort reform in the national healthcare debate. Recently, we saw the Illinois Supreme Court rule that caps on medical malpractice damages were unconstitutional, a great victory for patients in our state. We hope that our national representatives will follow Illinois’ example and realize that tort reform has no place in the healthcare debate. Healthcare reform should focus on lowering healthcare costs and making affordable healthcare accessible to everyone. Tort reform will not ease access, and it will not lower healthcare costs significantly. In fact, the CBO released a report in October 2009 that said tort reform would only lower the total cost of healthcare spending by 0.5%. To read the full text of the President’s Proposal on healthcare reform, follow the link.