What Others Are Saying About the Effect of Lawsuit Abuse on Healthcare
President George W. Bush
"[W]e should be serving the interests of the patients, not the self-interest of trial lawyers…needless litigation does incredible harm to our healthcare system. It costs everyone time and money - especially patients who need care quickly - and can destroy the bond of trust between physician and patient. Frivolous lawsuits drive up insurance premiums for everybody, and discourage employers from offering employee coverage at all. It is really important to remember that we want to help doctors to heal, not encourage lawyers to sue." - Agenda For Improving Health Care Security, February 11, 2002
Tommy Thompson, Secretary of Health and Human Services
"We must strive to create a healthcare delivery system that protects patients and allows doctors to follow through on decisions that they conclude would be in the patient's best interest. Slow and costly litigation should be a last resort." - Testimony before the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on Principles for Establishing Managed Care Reform, March 1, 2001
The Wall Street Journal
"… [A] runaway tort system and skyrocketing jury awards… [are] driving medical insurance costs out of sight, causing doctors to retire early or leave the states and threatening medical care…the people that are really hurting aren't doctors or insurance companies, but patients." - "Lawyers vs. Patients", Editorial, May 1, 2002
The Washington Post
"As to the right to sue, our preference is to keep the practice of medicine as far from the courts and the predatory instincts of some of the trial bar as possible…the threat of a lawsuits should not be what governs healthcare in this country." - "The Managed-Care Deadlock", Editorial, June 15, 2002
Stephen B. Burbank, professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School
" There is unquestionably a certain amount of fraud going on in this type of litigation…People who have not been injured and people who have been injured in the most minor ways get swept in with those who are seriously injured." - "Mass Diet-Pill Litigation Inflates Settlement Costs to $13.2 Billion", The Philadelphia Inquirer, April 9, 2002
American Medical Association President Yank D. Coble, Jr.
"These new data deliver hard numbers to a shocking reality- America's broken medical liability system is having disastrous effects on patients and their physicians." AMA President Yank D. Coble, Jr. MD, PR Newswire, April 3, 2003. (referring to an April 2003 study released by the AMA)
President Bush is prudently proposing the imposition of caps on medical malpractice awards for pain and suffering… But these ceilings are merely a stopgap. They deal with only one aspect of what greedy trial lawyers and timid judges are doing to destroy the American healthcare system. "Fact and Comment," Forbes Magazine, March 31, 2003.
Deanna Rood, an expectant mother in Nevada, upon learning that her doctor is leaving his Las Vegas practice because he would have to borrow money to meet this year's malpractice insurance
"I'm in a scary position right now… I'm six months pregnant, and I don't have a doctor." - "Fed Up Obstetricians Look for a Way Out", USA Today, July 1, 2002