The U.S. House of Representatives has already passed HR 1215, misleadingly titled, Protecting Access to Care Act.” The law awaits action in the Senate and, if passed, will have many negative impacts on those who are the victims of medical negligence including the following:
- An across-the-board $250,000 “cap” on compensation for “non-economic” injuries (like paralysis, trauma, reproductive harm), which would be mandated in states even where such caps are unconstitutional.
- A repeal of state collateral source rules, meaning a wrongdoer can reduce their obligation to compensate a patient by the amount of disability, workers compensation or other insurance received, to which a patient has a right.
- A prohibition against a severely-injured patient receiving a full jury award in a lump sum, leaving the patient vulnerable and under compensated while the insurance company gets to sit on the money and pocket the interest.
You can read a more exhaustive list of the punitive effects of the proposed law at the Center for Justice and Democracy website.
I thought about sharing a story or two or three about how this law would hurt residents of Southside and Southwest Virginia but decided to let an article from The Hill ( a non-partisan political newspaper published in DC) shine the light on this outrageous proposed legislation. You can read the article here.