Health Care Reform Begins With Tort Reform
(Peapack, NJ)â€¦ Fiscal Conservative Kate Whitman, Republican for Congress today shared details of her plan to reform our nationâ€™s broken health care system in an effort to make health insurance affordable for all families.Â Whitman stated, â€œThe unfortunate and unnecessary rapid rise in healthcare costs to individuals and employers is due to an unchecked medical tort system.â€?Â
New Jerseyâ€™s tort liability system is ranked second to worst in the nation, in the 2008 study released by the non-partisan Pacific Research Institute (PRI), which specializes in health care policy.Â An earlier study by PRI found that excessive wasteful tort costs topped $589 Billion annually, which is equivalent to about a $7,848 annual tax for the average American family of four.Â Last years PRI study determined that less than 15 cents per tort settlement actually compensates the victim.
â€œAt a time when Americans are struggling to make ends meet, politicians are wasting our tax dollars on earmark spending while lawyers are driving up our healthcare costs through frivolous lawsuits,â€? stated Kate Whitman.Â She continued, â€œThis is unacceptable.Â By eliminating frivolous lawsuits we can begin to reform our health care system and bring affordable health care to every American man, woman and child.â€?
To combat potential lawsuits, doctors now order additional and unnecessary medical tests which total over $124 Billion annually.Â These extra defensive medicine tests have led to about 3-4 million Americans being unable to afford health insurance coverage because of rising premiums.Â â€œWe need to bring affordable private-sector and free-market driven, accessible health coverage to Americans, not drive more people out of the system because of redundant medical tests,â€? Whitman commented.
A recent Star-Ledger article examining the negative effect of medical torts in New Jersey found that a whopping â€œ93 percent of pharmaceutical mass torts in our court system are brought by out-of-state plaintiffs,â€? and â€œthree out of four employers have been sued or threatened with a lawsuit in the past five years.â€? (Star-Ledger, 5-4-08)Â Whitman responded, â€œAs New Jersey residents we bear the cost of those lawsuits and donâ€™t see any return.Â New Jersey is a prime example of the nationâ€™s broken system that must be reformed now by eliminating frivolous medical lawsuits, which will serve as a pathway toward bringing affordable healthcare to American individuals and families.â€?
For more information or to volunteer, please contact www.kateforcongress.com