From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
How costly are medical malpractice lawsuits to the economy?

January 29, 2004 12:21 PM, a new service from the non-partisan Annenberg Public Policy Center, casts doubt over the statistics Bush uses to justify his proposed $250,000 "pain and suffering" cap on medical malpractice lawsuits:

His administration projects savings to the entire economy of between $60 billion and $108 billion per year in health-care costs, including $28 billion or more to federal taxpayers. But both the General Accounting Office and the Congressional Budget Office criticize the 1996 study the Bush administration uses as their main support. These nonpartisan agencies suggest savings – if any – would be relatively small.

Bottom line: The 1996 study (run by Mark McClellan, now Bush's FDA chief) used an analysis of Medicare patients hospitalized for two types of heart disease and extrapolated the results across the entire healthcare system. The General Accounting Office disputed this methodology saying it "focused on only one condition and on a hospital setting -- it cannot be extrapolated to the larger practice of medicine." The Congressional Budget Office found no significant difference in spending between states with or without the caps.

Yet another for the Bush deception file.

More from the archive in Economy, Health, Lawsuits, Lies and Deceit.

How costly are medical malpractice lawsuits to the economy? (01.29.2004)

Next Entry: $140 billion increase in cost of prescription drug bill (01.29.2004)
Previous Entry: "grave and gathering danger" vs. "imminent threat" (01.29.2004)

Read the 4 comments.


Yeah, so if we can get people to stop suing for HUGE amounts, health care will cost less because doctors won't have to pay higher premiums and they won't have to practice defensive medicine by calling for a battery of unnecessary tests just to have a stable defense. It will cost all consumers less (because health care is necessary for everyone) and also the taxpayers. The government pays for Medicaid, Medicare, and health insurance for all federal employees. Where do you think it gets that money? Yes, you're so smart, the taxpayers. I think a cap is perfect. It's only a cap on economic damages, not all damages that idiots sue for these days; $250,000 is not the only amount the plantiff will be able to obtain. America is sue crazy (thinking that something is always owed to them) and it has to stop somewhere.

Mon May 3 2004 8:55 PM


are insurance premiums rising because of malpractice settlements( which have declined over the past few years) or does the fact that insurance companies lost billions in the stock market have anything to do with it?

Thu Jul 15 2004 11:07 AM


Guess what? Medical malpractice happened to me. I no longer believe all the medical industry hype. They just want to keep malpractice out of the news by preventing large malpractice judgements. Who's looking out for you? Not the lawyers, they only want to do the serious cases like brain damage. A doctor can do a lot of damage before you get a lawyer to take your case.

Mon Oct 31 2005 5:36 AM


I didn't know Bush could be this generous. But he is doing great these days.

Wed Jan 25 2006 6:28 AM

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