Hundreds of doctors rally for cap on malpractice awards

Massachusetts’ Fitchburg Sentinel
Wednesday, April 9, 2003

Hundreds of doctors whose practices are threatened by soaring malpractice insurance costs rallied Tuesday in support of legislation that would restrict monetary damages that can be awarded in a medical malpractice suit.

Gov. Mitt Romney and several legislators gave their support to the doctors' bill, which would cap so-called "pain and suffering" damages in malpractice suits to $500,000, helping to ease the rise in insurance premiums.

"People think that with any malpractice award, that the insurance company will pay and isn't that a good thing," Romney said. "That isn't the truth. The insurance company never pays. They'd be out of business if they had to pay. They always pass along the cost of the insurance to you, and it goes into higher premiums for everyone." 

The Center for Justice and Democracy said Tuesday that the true cause of higher premiums is from insurance companies trying to recoup losses in stock market investments.

"The cost of malpractice insurance is an artificial premium that the insurance industry is charging because they can get away with it," said Rebecca Hoffman, organizing director of the Center for Justice and Democracy.

Opponents of the malpractice reform pointed out that many states do not adequately discipline incompetent doctors, and that the jury awards to victims are the only tools to protect victims from doctors' mistakes.
For a copy of the complete article, contact CJ&D.

Join Our Fight!

The Center for Justice & Democracy is the only national consumer organization in the country exclusively dedicated to protecting our civil justice system. If you'd like more information, please contact us.

Connect with us