Med-mal bill not seen as a panacea

Edwardsville Intelligencer
Wednesday, June 8, 2005

As expected, news that the Illinois General Assembly approved legislation placing caps on non-economic damages in medical malpractice lawsuits met with mixed reactions.
Supporters of caps had proposed much lower caps than the $500,000 limit on awards against doctors and the $1 million limit on awards against hospitals.
Democrats who voted for it called it a compromise because they didn't settle for the $250,000 limits the supporters wanted. But some opponents of caps scoff at the idea that it is a compromise, calling the limits on non-economic damages a huge win for the insurance industry and a cruel loss for patients in Illinois. 

The Center for Justice and Democracy in Chicago blamed the Illinois State Medical Society and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for sending misinformation to legislators about the advantages of caps which it calls cruel legislation, telling them the way to reduce insurance premiums for doctors is to make it more difficult for sick and injured patients to collect fair compensation for their injuries. 
 "There is no basis for this view, whether in Illinois or the rest of America," Amber Hard, staff director of CJ&D, said. "This outrageous proposal is nothing more than a back-room deal between the hospitals, insurers, and legislators to subvert our civil justice system, allowing hospitals and other health care providers to escape financial responsibility for the harm and damage they cause innocent Illinois citizens."
For a copy of the complete article, contact CJ&D

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