6 Malpractice Reform Proposals

Personal Injury Lawyer

Those familiar with the subject of medical malpractice are overwhelmingly aware of the imbalance and discourse in the judicial system. For one thing, judgments tend to penalize good doctors more than anything, favoring those patients who experience adverse outcomes of surgery. While on the other end of the spectrum, patients who are on the receiving end of real malpractice by lacks surgeons are less likely to be compensated for their pain and suffering. Therefore, reform proposals aim to curb the expectation of frivolous lawsuits through arbitration and damage caps. At least six proposals are seeking to make waves in the landscape of malpractice reform.

  1. Malpractice Courts

    The argument for malpractice courts is long-standing and for a good reason. Malpractice cases tried in front of a jury made up of nonmedical professionals results in an unbalanced and often biased verdict. Courts designed for malpractice cases would depend on the judgments of knowledgeable health care professionals, removing the confusion around the idea of malpractice.
  2. Arbitration

    Another proposal to limit malpractice lawsuits is to encourage arbitration. Essentially, if a provider were to admit responsibility and inform the patient of the potential problems, they would limit their exposure to noneconomic damages.

  3. Contingency Fees

    Some lawyers bastardize the judicial system by fishing for malpractice lawsuits regardless of the specifics of the case. These attorneys are typically referred to as ambulance chasers. One way to curb this abuse of the system is to limit contingency fees. In other words, place a cap on the potential earnings of an attorney for malpractice cases regardless of the verdict or award.
  4. Legal Expenses

    While the idea of having the losing side of a case pay the legal expenses of the winning party seems OK, this system may discourage malpractice claims from real patients who have suffered at the hands of an unprofessional health care provider. Therefore, it is better to limit penalties or disallow the passing off of legal expenses.
  5. Damage Caps

    Unfortunately, the fear of frivolous malpractice lawsuits can deter competent physicians from following through on their education. Therefore, some proposals are in the works to limit noneconomic damages, which means that patients claiming pain and suffering will only be allowed to sue for a capped amount. In Texas, this amount is $250,000.

  6. No-Fault Insurance

    Another option to curb the abuse of the malpractice system is to create no-fault medical injury insurance. This proposal would work like no-fault auto insurance in that the injured party will receive payment regardless of who is at fault for the injury.

Medical malpractice is a large and complex issue that is always evolving. If you are in need of a malpractice attorney, then call a local professional to discuss your options.

Resource: Personal Injury Lawyer Harrisonburg, VA, MartinWren, P.C.

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