White House Vows Quick Action on Medical Malpractice Reform Pledge
see original: Expect details on the location and scope of the White House tort reform measures within the next month. Once they do come out, we will analyze them and get back with details. We are the leading news site for all that is Liability Insurance related.
White House officials and aides to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on Thursday vowed rapid follow up to President Obama’s call for medical malpractice reform as part of his push for passage of a health care reform bill.
Sebelius hopes to announce within a month the location and scope of demonstration projects to curb frivolous lawsuits and, possibly, reduce the use of so-called defensive medicine to avoid them, an administration official told FOX News.
No decisions have been made, but the administration is looking at two approaches: One is to have doctors admit and disclose a medical mistake soon after it occurred and having patients submit a potential malpractice claim to a mediator instead of filing a lawsuit. The other is to have an independent panel of experts review the merit of a patient’s claim and validate it through an affidavit before a lawsuit can be filed.
“The president has asked the secretary to move forward on this issue, he highlighted in his speech and the secretary is committed to carrying out the president’s wishes,” the official told FOX News.
Obama’s pledge Wednesday to examine medical malpractice reform was met with skepticism from Republicans, who signaled Thursday that the president will have to take concrete steps toward reining in runaway trial costs before winning their support on health care reform.
Republicans see tort reform as a way to drive down health care costs, and Obama drew applause in his address to a joint session of Congress when he introduced his initiative.
“I don’t believe malpractice reform is a silver bullet, but I’ve talked to enough doctors to know that defensive medicine may be contributing to unnecessary costs,” Obama said.
The Health and Human Services Department’s Agency for Health Care Research and quality will review the best approaches to dealing with frivolous lawsuits and report soon to Sebelius on recommendations for demonstration projects.