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Health Care and the 2004 Elections: Medical Liability Reform

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Publication Date: October 2004

Publisher(s): Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Topic: Health (Quality of health care)
Law and ethics (Liability, torts, and personal injury)

Keywords: Health Policy

Type: Brief

Coverage: United States

Abstract:

Sharp increases in medical liability insurance premiums in recent years, and the withdrawal of some insurers from this market have focused the attention of health care providers, patients, and policymakers on reform of the medical liability system.  Of additional concern is that the fear of liability causes physicians to practice medicine in ways that raise costs.  There are varying opinions of how medical liability reform should be addressed, including whether it should remain a state issue or be addressed at the federal level, and, if so, how.