North Carolina Now Has Medical Lawsuit Reform – Help Us Keep It That Way

Medical malpractice lawsuits have cost consumers, patients and taxpayers millions of dollars each year by increasing health care costs.

This year, the General Assembly passed common-sense reforms that will protect patients and hold down health care costs for all of us.

Reform will reduce the threat of frivolous lawsuits and excessive jury awards and will:

  • Help to lower the premiums doctors pay for malpractice insurance, making health care more accessible and affordable.
  • Mean less money in trial lawyers’ pockets and more money in the pockets of consumers and taxpayers.
  • Relieve the pressure on doctors to order medical tests and treatments that are unnecessary and expensive but help protect against lawsuits.

Even though reforms have passed, the threats to this legislation have not.  Even now trial lawyers are strategizing on how to attack the medical liability reform law.

Support NCAHC today to help preserve this historic piece of legislation.

Comments

  1. tim carr, md, mba says:

    First and foremost we would like to thank you for your leadership on the
    medical liability issue. You have consistently said that medical liability
    reform is needed to contain health care costs for everyone and improve
    access to critical health services.

    To accomplish that goal, we sincerely hope you will take the necessary steps
    to ensure the House builds on the provisions of Senate Bill 33. That bill
    contains several important reforms that we feel are vitally important
    including provisions to address the risky and difficult circumstances
    surrounding emergency care, a meaningful cap on noneconomic damages, and
    scheduled payments for those with long-term injuries caused by medical
    malpractice.

    We would like to mention one additional issue that we think is of great
    importance. We know that juries are not given accurate information about
    medical costs. Today’s law only allows jurors to hear about the full charges
    that must be placed on medical claim forms. They are not told about the much
    smaller amounts that we accept as payment in full for our services. These
    amounts are often 1/2 to 1/3 of the full charges. So juries think the
    plaintiff paid $1.00 when in fact they’ve paid $0.35 to $0.50. This, of
    course, has the effect of doubling or tripling the actual medical costs in
    the minds of jurors and encourages them to award payment that far exceeds
    reality. We encourage you to consider addressing this problem in the House
    bill. The plaintiff’s lawyers have a website called “letjuriesdecide.com” so
    we’re sure they should have no objection to giving the juries accurate
    information upon which to decide.

    Again, thank you for taking on this important issue. If there is anything we
    can do to help in the push for meaningful medical liability reform, please
    let us know.

  2. Rebecca Coker, MD says:

    Poignant and applauded remarks by Tim Carr. I hope everyone is listening.

  3. Fran Sandfort says:

    I listen to talk radio all day and I’ve noticed the ads about the bill Tom Apodaca is trying to get through. May I offer some advice? In response to an ad countering his bill, you are airing an ad so full of the trite political phrases that people just naturally tune out — “frivolous lawsuits,” “medical liability system,” etc. Why don’t you just say what you mean in common language like the good-old-boy you’re trying to counteract? (You could even use some trite phrases like “ambulance chasers” and “John Edwards”)

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