The news got a little bit worse for doctors in Pennsylvania. According to a post-gazette.com article, the money that doctors have been paying for a statewide fund to use in case of large medical malpractice lawsuits will be $100 million less, which represents two thirds of the total. This money will be transferred over to the state’s general fund because Pennsylvania is trying to balance its 3.2 billion deficit. Hopefully this action does not lead to poorer healthcare when the patient goes in to see a physician.
An aide to House Majority Leader Todd Eachus, D-Hazleton said, “This is not an element of the budget that currently is in dispute. This money would be used as part of our overall strategy at plugging a $3.2 billion deficit that we face this year. If we don’t do this … we face a significant tax increase next year.”
Director of governmental affairs for the Pennsylvania Medical Society, said, “We believe we have a vested property right to that money.” Doctors have found it difficult to find insurance so they setup the fund in the 1970’s to protect them from Pennsylvania medical malpractice judgments. Doctors are mandated by state law to not only have their own insurance but to also pay money into the fund known as the Mcare insurance fund. The association also alleges the state of not transferring yearly surplus funds over to the next year, which they claim makes everything more expensive for everyone.
This is not the first time the medical society and the state have tangled in court as the medical association accused the state of withholding $616 million from going into the Mcare fund from money collected through a cigarette tax. The state went so far as to say they did not have to transfer the money. A Commonwealth Court ruled that the state’s motion to throw out the case was denied.
Allegheny County Medical Society executive director, said, “Obviously, physicians are concerned. Our state malpractice liability premiums are still significantly higher than many other states, including surrounding states, and we do compete with other locations for attracting physicians. It’s as if they essentially were placing a special tax on physicians.Why doesn’t anyone suggest a special tax on plaintiff attorneys’ contingency fees?”
State officials said, “this is a tremendously difficult budget year” attributed to the large number of unemployed and lower revenues. “There is an awful lot of pain throughout this budget.”
As a patient who feels wronged, though, you have the right to explore your legal options and with so many states facing historic deficits, healthcare is not immune to cuts. If you or someone you love feel that you have been treated wrongly be a medical doctor, hospital, or someone in the medical field contact, the Pennsylvania medical malpractice lawyers at Anapol Weiss. They have extensive knowledge of the law and skill in these types of cases. Anapol Weiss personal injury lawyers have experience with medical malpractice cases and can look at the basic information and determine whether or not you have grounds to sue a doctor, medical team, pharmacist, or hospital for medical malpractice. Please call 1-866-735-2792 for a free consultation
Source article: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09281/1003828-28.stm?cmpid=newspanel3