Public Citizen’s Research Shows Medical Malpractice Litigation Not the Reason for Soaring Healthcare

While some in Congress point to medical malpractice lawsuits as the primary culprit behind rising healthcare costs, the policy group Public Citizen says that their research demonstrates that that is simply not true. According to one media report, “Public Citizen said that since 2003, medical malpractice payments have fallen 28.8 percent, yet national healthcare costs are up 58.2 percent. “If healthcare costs paralleled litigation trends during the past decade, the nation’s healthcare bill in 2012 would have been $1.3 trillion. Instead, it was $2.8 trillion,” the organization said in the news release. The report concluded that the decrease in litigation is most likely due to state laws that have reduced patients’ legal rights rather than it is to improvements in medical care.”
In spite of this new research, we’re sure to hear more of the same from politicians as the debate over healthcare continues into the fall.