Court says Wis. must repay malpractice fund $200M

Side Note: The Wisconsin Supreme Court has found that the state must repay $200M that it took out of the state patient compensation fund for malpractice.  This is a victory for the Wisconsin Medical Association, and for health care consumers in Wisconsin.  A solvent patient compensation fund keeps medical malpractice insurance premiums stable, and in turn drives down the cost of health care in the state.

by Scott Bauer
Business Week

The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the state must repay a medical malpractice fund more than $200 million it took to balance the budget three years ago, potentially throwing the current budget into disarray.

In its 5-2 decision, the court agreed with the Wisconsin Medical Society that taking the money from the fund used to help pay malpractice claims was unconstitutional. It sent the case back to a lower court with directions that it order the state to pay back the money with interest and lost earnings.

The ruling did not say when the money would have to be paid back. That was left to the lower court to determine.

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