AIA Applauds Med-Mal Reform Initiative in Fla. House

March 24, 2003

The American Insurance Association (AIA) praised the vote of the Florida House of Representatives giving final approval to a comprehensive medical liability reform bill, saying that reform is a necessity if the state wants to encourage insurers to come back into the Florida market.

“From the beginning of this process, insurers have emphasized that no single silver bullet is going to resolve the crisis that currently exists in Florida’s medical liability insurance market,” said Cecil Pearce, AIA vice president, southeast region. “Comprehensive reform is necessary to ease the severity in claim costs, to have a moderating influence on rates and to bring insurers back into the market.”

The version of HB 1713 that emerged from the House floor debate contains several key provisions supported by AIA and recommended by the Governor’s Task Force on Healthcare Professional Liability, including a $250,000 cap on non-economic damages per incident, tightening of the conditions for filing a bad faith cause of action against insurers, and numerous patient safety initiatives.

“We urge the Senate to follow the lead of the House of Representatives,” said Pearce, “because broad-based reform has proven that it works.”

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