Medical Malpractice: Implications of Rising Premiums on Access to Health Care

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A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The recent rising cost of medical malpractice insurance premiums in many states has reportedly influenced some physicians to move or close practices, reduce high-risk services, or alter their practices to preclude potential lawsuits (known as defensive medicine practices). States have revised tort laws under which malpractice lawsuits are litigated to help constrain malpractice premium and claims costs. Some of these tort reform laws include caps on monetary penalties for noneconomic harm, such as for plaintiffs' pain and suffering. Congress is considering legislation similar to some states' ... continued below

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United States. General Accounting Office. August 8, 2003.

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This report is part of the collection entitled: Government Accountability Office Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 27 times , with 10 in the last month . More information about this report can be viewed below.

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Description

A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The recent rising cost of medical malpractice insurance premiums in many states has reportedly influenced some physicians to move or close practices, reduce high-risk services, or alter their practices to preclude potential lawsuits (known as defensive medicine practices). States have revised tort laws under which malpractice lawsuits are litigated to help constrain malpractice premium and claims costs. Some of these tort reform laws include caps on monetary penalties for noneconomic harm, such as for plaintiffs' pain and suffering. Congress is considering legislation similar to some states' tort reform laws. GAO examined how health care provider responses to rising malpractice premiums have affected access to health care, whether physicians practice defensive medicine, and how growth in malpractice premiums and claims payments compares across states with varying tort reform laws. Because national data on providers' responses to rising premiums are not reliable, GAO examined the experiences in five states with reported malpractice-related problems (Florida, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Mississippi, and West Virginia) and four states without reported problems (California, Colorado, Minnesota, and Montana) and analyzed growth in malpractice premiums and claims payments across all states and the District of Columbia."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • August 8, 2003

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 11, 2014, 5:03 a.m.

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United States. General Accounting Office. Medical Malpractice: Implications of Rising Premiums on Access to Health Care, report, August 8, 2003; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc292651/: accessed November 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.