Currently in the state of New York, there is an interesting dynamic happening in the medical field regarding awards given to victims of medical malpractice.
Many representatives of hospitals are arguing in favor of “caps” for financial compensation awarded to victims of alleged medical malpractice, in response to malpractice lawsuits. A New York Criminal Lawyer notes that one of the main reasons for their argument is the correlation between high malpractice awards and high costs of medical care to the average patient. The hospitals and doctors that are fighting for these malpractice award caps are also directly correlated to the increased need for “defensive medicine”, which includes certain medical procedures and tests which might normally be deemed unnecessary, were it not for the extra care given to patients out of fear of malpractice accusations.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, as observed by a New York Criminal lawyer, are consumer advocacy groups and attorneys, who claim that award caps for medical malpractice are detrimental to the interests of patients. They continue with a positive reason for keeping caps off of malpractice award suits by stating that when it comes to long-term care, cap-less awards act as an important element for the well-being of the patients. Furthermore, they maintain that hospitals do not usually pay such malpractice awards out of their own pocket; in fact, the insurance provider usually takes care of such claims, although insurance premiums have steadily increased in recent years.
Another reason that hospitals and doctors are hoping for award caps is the claim that such caps would result in a substantial lowering in insurance costs for the hospitals. However, a representative of the New York State Bar Association comments, “We’ve looked at the states where this has been put into place, for example in Texas,” he said. “Texas adopted caps. Have insurance rates gone down? No. They haven’t gone down one cent.” Medicaid currently has a multi-billion dollar budget, yet they do not pay out damage claims in cases of medical malpractice. Although doctors and hospitals have stressed the necessity for “relief” from massive malpractice awards, it appears as though the majority of cases and costs are absorbed by the insurance provider.
This issue is important to society and it is hoped that a delicate balance is struck between proper medical care for patients and the avoidance of flippant malpractice lawsuits. As the State of New York battles through this issue, we are likely to see similar debate nationwide In the event that you or those you love find yourself in the midst of a scenario such as that described above, qualified legal counsel is available to assist you with individual care and concern, as well as beneficial legal counsel and representation.
Whether you have been charged with Medicaid fraud, insurance fraud, or other white collar crime, it is important to speak with our office as soon as possible. We will ensure that you receive an aggressive defense, and that your rights are protected.