July 2009 Newsletter

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  • December 3, 2010
Protect Patients Now

Volume 4, Issue 7 JULY 2009 Newsletter


Special points of interest:
PPN Launches Patient Petition to Support Medical Liability Reform
Advances for Arizona Patients
Do No Harm
Washington Post Sees the Light on Reform

PPN Launches Patient Petition to Support Medical Liability Reform

Just last week, PPN launched a petition drive to gather support for including medical liability reform in any health care reform legislation passed by the US Congress. If you haven’t already done so, please take a moment to review the petition and add your name to our growing list of supporters.

As you well know, there is widespread agreement among policy makers, opinion leaders, health care policy experts, and the public that our nation’s medical liability system does not serve the needs of patients. Medical liability reform is necessary to bring down health care costs for all patients, reduce the billions of dollars spent each year on defensive medicine, and to ensure patient access to quality medical care.

True health care reform is only possible if it includes changes to our medical liability system.

Click here to sign the Protect Patients Now medical liability reform petition. Thank you for your continued support!

Advances for Arizona Patients

With a new governor in place, Arizona is making progress on ending medical lawsuit abuse. A bill signed earlier this month raises the burden of proof patients must show when they sue an emergency-room physician, health-care worker or hospital.

After a similar bill was vetoed by former Governor Napolitano, liability reform supporters have found a friend in Governor Jan Brewer. Doctors and hospital groups say existing law discouraged doctors from treating patients at emergency rooms because of the fear of lawsuit abuse. Hospitals say such jobs are a critical part of health care’s safety net, and these doctors often see patients with little or no knowledge about the patient’s medical history and suing them should require a higher burden of proof.

To read more about Arizona’s new medical liability reform law, click here.

Do No Harm

Arizona Senator and former presidential candidate John McCain took to the op-ed circuit this month, writing that health care reform legislation should follow the first doctrine of the Hippocratic Oath, and do no harm.

A supporter of patient access to care, Senator McCain writes, “We also must address medical malpractice insurance, similar to what California implemented, to protect health-care providers from unlimited frivolous lawsuits.”

To read Senator McCain’s op-ed, click here.

Washington Post Sees the Light on Reform

In an editorial this month on health care savings, The Washington Post endorsed changes to our “irrational” medical liability system. The Washington Post acknowledged that doctors’ higher liability premiums are passed on to patients, and favored finding ways to screen out frivolous lawsuits as a way to lower health care costs.

Finally, the Washington Post is seeing the light – let’s hope policy makers in Washington, DC are reading.

Click here to read the editorial about reducing health care costs.

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