The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Jul. 23, 2024

Latta votes for litigation reform measure

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) joined his colleagues in passing needed litigation reforms that would save $50 billion over the next decade and lower health care costs.

Rep. Bob Latta

H.R. 1215, the Protecting Access to Care Act, would provide flexible legal reforms to be used at the discretion of the states. The bill caps noneconomic damages in a health care lawsuit to $250,000 and also limits contingency fees that lawyers can charge. H.R. 1215 would only be applicable to health care provided by federal programs, or health care that incorporates federal subsidies or tax benefits.

The legislation does not impose any caps for economic losses, which can include medical costs, lost wages, future lost wages, and rehabilitation costs.

“Everyone agrees that victims of medical malpractice deserve to be fully compensated for their damages,” said Latta. “The problem arises when frivolous and excessive lawsuits are filed for the benefit of attorneys, not those who have been wronged.

“These lawsuits drive up the cost of health care for everyone as doctors are forced to spend their time practicing defensive medicine to guard against litigation, instead of doing what is best for their patients,” Latta added. “Unneeded tests and procedures means higher costs for patients and the health care system overall and is a drain on resources. Passing this legislation — which has been extremely successful at the state level — will save $50 billion, reduce health care costs, and continue to protect patients from medical malpractice.”

Meaningful litigation reform is part of the “phase 3” portion of health care reform. Phase 1 being the passage of the American Health Care Act and phase 2 being actions taken by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Along with medical litigation reform, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation to allow small businesses to pool together to purchase insurance and legislation to remove anti-trust exemptions for insurers to promote competitiveness.

POSTED: 06/29/17 at 7:29 am. FILED UNDER: News