AAI Applauds Pres. Bush’s Call to Reform Med-Mal

January 30, 2003

The Alliance of American Insurers (AAI) is applauding President Bush’s continued support for medical liability reforms, as evidenced in his State of the Union address Jan. 28.

“President Bush has once again sent Congress a clear-cut message to act on a meaningful package of medical liability reforms,” Rodger Lawson, Alliance president, commented. “The Alliance believes strongly that Congress should pass the President’s plan – to avert a growing health-care crisis fed by the burgeoning number and size of malpractice claims.”

“To improve our nation’s health care system, we must address one of the prime causes of higher costs: the constant threat that doctors and hospitals will be unfairly sued,” Lawson said.

“Reforming this broken system will improve patient access to health-care providers by helping to bring costs under control,” Lawson said.

The President’s medical liability reforms include many items supported by the Alliance: it would cap recoveries for non-economic damages; it would allow for payments of judgments over time rather than in a single, lump sum; it would ensure that old cases could not be brought years after an event; it would reduce the amount doctors must pay if a plaintiff has received other payments from an insurer to compensate for their losses; and it would provide that defendants pay judgments in proportion to their fault.

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