Archives: June 2012

Innovation Stifled by Defensive Medicine

Washington Millions of dollars that could be used for innovation in health care delivery often are funneled toward medical liability costs, a panel representing private health systems told a Senate committee on May 23. The witnesses said boosting quality through innovative health system reforms would do a great deal to tamp down the defensive medicine practices that result from the heightened liability climate. “With the very visible impact and the efforts around the health system on quality and the pursuit of quality, my anticipation is that quality of care will go up and the whole issue around defensive medicine will become much more mitigated,” Richard Migliori, MD, executive vice president for health services for UnitedHealth Group, told the Senate Finance Committee. The hearing was held to address the progress of private-sector systems to reduce costs and improve quality, but the discussion quickly turned to defensive medicine. Sen. Orrin Hatch (R, Utah), the top Republican on the Finance panel and a former medical liability defense lawyer, asked the witnesses what they were spending to protect against medical liability. “What is the percentage of cost of doing business that’s caused by many of these suits? And how serious are they in your…

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June 2012 – Newsletter

Protect Patients Now Volume 7, Issue 6 June 2012 Newsletter E-Newsletter Special points of interest: Reform Reset: Supreme Court Decision Offers Opportunity for Medical Liability Fixes Innovation Stifled by Defensive Medicine Results are in – and Americans Understand High Cost of Broken Liability System Supreme Court Decision Offers Opportunity for Medical Liability Fixes Following today’s landmark decision to largely uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the Health Coalition on Liability and Access will move forward on a new opportunity to make immediate changes to a medical liability system that works for neither patients nor physicians. “As Congress continues to address the important health care issues facing this nation, any reform efforts must include fixing our country’s broken medical liability system,” said HCLA Chairman Mike Stinson. “Comprehensive medical liability reform is an important patient issue, and a critical component to making health care affordable and accessible to all,” Stinson continued. The portion of the bill related to the individual mandate was upheld, but other provisions related to state Medicaid funding were found to be unconstitutional. While the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act did not include comprehensive medical liability reforms, medical liability reform legislation has passed in the House of Representatives…

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