Friday, July 11, 2014
They are going to be making more money than doctors will: The Truth About Lawyers and Health Care Reform (and health care costs will pay for this)
The Truth About Lawyers and Health Care Reform Medical Malpractice Tort Attorneys Happen to Be One of the Biggest Contributors to the Democrats in Congress. it is No Wonder There Are No Provisions Regarding Tort Reform in the Democrat's Health Care Bills Lex Loeb Contributor Network . Now that the democrats who control congress in both the House and the Senate are fine tuning their health care reform bills the public is becoming aware that their version of national health care reform is likely to result in high taxes on existing health care policies. Instead of cutting taxes on health care congress is looking to tax medical devices including eye glasses and add tax surcharges on private insurance premiums and are even introducing language that essentially takes more money out of existing entitlement checks like social security and Medicare to pay for those who might not presently have any health care. Information leaks out that the medical malpractice industry, yes it is an industry, costs American consumers over 100 billion dollars a year. Everyone wants to see patients who suffer medical malpractice compensated but few people are aware about just what the medical malpractice industry is all about, how it really works and why the tort attorneys have so much money to bankroll all the democrats and others in congress to protect their very lucrative niche industry from any sort of congressional or administrative oversight or reform. The medical malpractice industry is run by attorneys like John Edwards who ultimately became a famous US Senator. Most tort attorneys are happy in court or at a deposition to point a finger at your doctor telling them they are only in their profession for the money and don't see anything hypocritical about such an assertion. Few medical health care attorneys ever went to medical or nursing school and most patients in America would still rather go to a doctor and risk malpractice than go to an attorney for their health care but considering that the attorneys consume about 35-50 percent of the medical malpractice 100 billion dollars per year, that could be enough money to buy basic health care insurance for all the uninsured in the USA including the illegal aliens. All doctors costs of malpractice get passed on to their patients and all hospitals ultimately have to pass on their costs ultimately to patients too. Doctors have no choice but to pay the high cost of medical malpractice insurance on an annual basis. Doctors regularly are forced to monitor what medical malpractice suits do to create precedents on what they have to do to practice medicine and often courts just create complete junk science out of the blue that doctors find they have to comply with. Doctors report that they order more tests than they otherwise do just to protect themselves and they pass those costs on to patients or their health care plans directly. Huge settlements for malpractice have become too much the norm but it only takes a few to inspire insurance companies to raise premiums for malpractice insurance. In some states and localities the malpractice insurance has put some medical doctors out of business because they cannot afford the insurance. In Florida certain kinds of doctors could not afford the insurance premiums and their services were no longer available in the state. Thanks to malpractice attorneys it is possible in some places to have a midwife deliver your baby but not a medical doctor. Everyone has read these reports and seen the counter actions taken by various legislatures to limit the size of jury awards. What people don't know much about is how the medical malpractice industry really works and how it is depleting funds that should otherwise go for medical care that instead is diverted to ever more rich attorneys like the illustrious Senator John Edwards. Here are some things you may or may not know that you should: 1. Tort Attorneys who work on a contingency basis tend only to take/ lucrative cases they think they can win. Patients who have unhappy outcomes in their treatments by doctors might think an attorney will instantly be willing to represent them only to find out that the lawyers are only chasing certain kinds of ambulances. Lawyers look for the slam dunk easy cases. Where you see the specialty in the full pages in the yellow pages an aggrieved patient can call around for days or years and never find an attorney willing to take a case because the lawyers would rather get cases that cost them less than 35 total hours of work to get a 40% contingency fee. The lawyers want to cherry pick the best cases for themselves and they look for cases where the case law and their local judges show favorable results resulting in quick no trial settlements and easy easy money. 2. The treat of a lawsuit is enough to get most insurance companies to settle as fast as possible. The tort attorneys work both sides of every case. Everyone involved in a tort case ends up having to hire an attorney at every level for representation. The lawyers want to drag in their friends as a professional courtesy to represent who ever it is that will be their opponent in court. These lawyers thrive on the game like nature of their adversarial relationships. If you had a doctor who exhibited these adversarial attributes you would be running away from your appointment. The contingency lawyer hope to spend as few hours as possible get a quick settlement if possible without going to trial and net the 40% contingency fee. 3. Malpractice victims, even if not actual victims, will only net 60% of the settlement they get whether or not they win by going to court or in a settlement. The Malpractice victim would be better off not having an attorney to get legal redress with but just directly settling with the insurance company. True medical health care reform would simply look at the data from past malpractice cases figure out what malpractice victim cs actually get compensated after attorney fees and just write the rewrite the laws to make it possible for victims to represent themselves before a committee of expert witnesses to see if they should be rewarded with set rate of compensation without having to enrich the do little attorneys at 40% or more. The malpractice game has become an industry because the lawyers want to move to quick settlements as fast as they can avoiding the time and cost of trials and they want to do it in rapid succession of cases to maximize their annual incomes so that they can send big campaign contributions to congressmen and other politicians to keep the game active. Some lawyers playing the game end up with attorney malpractice lawsuits on occasion because some of the easy to win cases they get they actually loose and a want to be instantly rich medical malpractice victim is secondarily victimized by an incompetent attorney. 4. Most people don't know that when medical malpractice cases actually go to court there are medical professionals called expert witnesses who play both sides in the courtroom and are usually better compensated per hour than the doctor you go to for your health care. The cost of these doctors is also derived from your health care dollars. It would seem if the same experts are used over and over again in court rooms that they might just write a medical practice rule book once and help set the rates of compensation for medical mistakes instead of going though the motions over and over again in court. That would not be in their own self interest getting paid thousands of dollars per day as on call expert witnesses. 5. The reason why there is no mention of medical malpractice or it's reform in any way shape or form in the proposed health care bill is a clue that the basic process of putting these laws on the books in congress is disingenuous, corrupt , self serving with the campaign contributions coming from rich tort attorneys and worst of all it makes no sense because of the obvious high cost the lawyers add to everyone's existing health care insurance premiums. The cost of medical malpractice is substantial at around 100 billion dollars a year and yet no mention of it in the health care bills. They cannot be serious or if they are just seriously dishonest. The congressmen and senators talk about putting everything on the table and keep tort reform out of the room completely. The odd thing is why the democrats seem to favor public options and national heath care systems where doctors might no longer be subject to malpractice as government employees until you realize that the case law might allow government to become an even bigger honey pot to the lawyers. 6. Tort attorneys see insurance money as their honey pot for exploitation. A while back a friend who is an attorney had me drive her around to look at the home street addresses of people she was considering filing suit against. She had to size up who she wanted to sue in advance to be sure they might likely have the money she wanted to sue them for. Most people are not aware of how unequal opportunity tort attorneys are because they have not been though these exercises with lawyers. Today lawyers just use google maps and do an asset search by individual to find out if it might be worth suing them. In the medical malpractice industry the attorneys just have to know the doctor has medical malpractice insurance and they also want to size up any potential personal wealth to try to grab a personal settlement on top of that from punitive damages. The more money in insurance pots the lawyers already know is there the more lawsuits they naturally have to file in order to optimize their income. Sure thing lawsuits are their favorite ones to work very little and get a big instant settlement in due course just because they know the insurance company won't risk going to trial. The doctor who might be perfectly innocent of any malpractice has his or her name dragged though the mud and then ends up just settling without admitting any wrong doing and eventually if not immediate their medical liability insurance premiums go up along with all their colleagues. It can happen nationwide once a court sets a new precedent for easy money cases. The science can be just as bad as what happened in the silicone breast implant case where first the science was said to be a direct link to cancer and then later the science shifted to no necessary link to cancer at all. No one gets to a settlement from a lawyer who wins a case with what later proves to be junk science. Doctors never get their reputations back and their future malpractice insurance rarely goes down in price until states are forced to pass jury award limits or other laws to reign in the tort attorneys. 7. Jackpot justice has popularized the publics interest in suing doctors hoping to win a fabulous multi million dollar award. The lawyers are advertising on television to get cases--though the ads only hint that they are looking for easy slam dunk cases. The big thing recently is for tort attorneys to advertise asbestos settlement claim services. It seems that they get a big net contingency fee just for getting more asbestos or possible asbestos victims to make a claim for part of the money that Congress in an umbrella settlement crated as a fund. I get the sense the lawyers do less than ten hours worth of work and then take 40% or more form what might be an actual asbestos victim. This is the sort of overlord status that our congress and senate appear to be giving tort attorneys in their quest to give us nationalized health care of one form or another. 8.The fact of the mater is medical malpractice is something most people want compensation for for good reason. The question why the court room procedures are the only way to go with it. After all the 100 billion dollars in successful malpractice suits and settlements per year how many bad doctors are removed from practicing? Not very many and very few as a result of malpractice suits. That should seem a little fishy? If doctors are so bad they need to be sued so often and the lawyers are doing a public service suing them then why can they even get more medical malpractice insurance in the future and remain practicing bad doctors? That makes no sense except when you realize that lawyers would be out of business with out doctor they can easily claim to be malpractice doctors. The reason why so many violent criminals are let back out on the streets are to keep the police and the prosecuting attorney's working? That may be true too. 9. Malpractice court precedents have led to unnecessary procedures being preformed on patients , unnecessary expensive testing just because after one case and one new court room president based on one possibly stupid expert witness or one ignorant jury. We then have doctors getting memos from their trade groups and insurance companies instructing them to do the unnecessary and that raises costs for everyone. It can actually get worse because doctors can actually be forced to do harm as a result of the profession trying to protect itself from the Alice in wonderland nature of the courts. 10. Medical malpractice industry is having anther deleterious effect on the quality of medicine and that is getting patients used to the idea that there should be no possible adverse consequences of any medical procedure. This is so absurd in practice that the same doctor who can be as easily accused of not detecting a cancer early enough can be accused of detecting it too early in the same or different patient because of the possible deleterious effects of the chemotherapy. The doctor is in a heads he loses tails he looses position in dealing with the medical malpractice mob's industry and some just up and quit. The cost of less doctors practicing is also higher medical expenses and lack of medical care. More doctors are trained to be scientific than lawyers are and the who legal nonsense is confusing to the doctors. Doctors being held responsible for bad outcomes of medical care live in a real world where all cures don't necessarily work on all people. There are unpredictable variables and outcomes because no two patients are exactly the same. Doctors even get blamed by attorneys for not predicting unknown birth defects in advance. Dead babies are the best slam dunk legal cases of all the ambulance chasings and the lawyers know it. Jurors will feel for the parents of a birth defect child and will blame a doctor who has nothing to do with the genetic variations that might result in the out come of a birth defect. The question is how congress with its pro tort attorney stance will deal with that in their health care reform? Chances are it has to mean immediate abortion when ever there is the slightest premonition of a possible birth defect? The courts are truly an Alice in wonderland reality and trying to make sense of what they dictate from a scientific standpoint where a birth defect is something like one in every 100,000 births is the judge telling the doctors "off with your head." If congress really wanted real honest health care reform they had better start dealing with tort reform as it relates to medical malpractice because the public is on to them that the whole medical health care reform is just new taxes on top of taxes to pay for nothing except social engineering or something that has no real ability to lower health care expense or raise the quality of care. Practically it seems that the congressional bills are just leading to having more attorneys in hospitals doing a lot more easy slam duck case work at high contingency fees, Ask your own doctor what he or she is paying for malpractice insurance per year and ask them if they know about frivolous suits of other doctors they know and you might start getting a different point of view about the true costs of the medical malpractice industry as it relates to your escalating health care premium costs. You might already be going to a doctor who is being forced to pay 20 to 80 thousand dollars per year in medical malpractice premiums. When you see the bill submitted to your insurance company beware those costs don't come out of thin air. The doctor has to charge it back to the patients because he is not going to the bank to borrow money to buy insurance to practice medicine never to be able to pay it back again. It comes out of your health care cost premiums. The doctor is not going to get 80 thousand dollars to pay the premium by playing your state lottery or investing in stocks. No they charge it to you. Then the lawyers see that money as their honey pot for easy extortion like settlement slam dunk cases that only net the supposed victims 60 percent of the whopping big settlements you read about. Medical malpractice victims who are real victims are often under compensated because courts are just as happy to award big settlements to every frivolous case. The lawyers say nay, there is no such thing as a frivolous lawsuit and then you pick up a newspaper and see another home intruder who breaks his leg during a robbery and successfully sues the owner of the House for a million bucks with his contingency lawyer getting 40% . .