Will the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Address the Problems Associated with Medical Malpractice?

A report funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation examines how malpractice reform could affect the amount of money Americans spend on health care and insurance. According to Urban Institute author Randall Bovbjerg, malpractice reform could significantly cut health care costs, but the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act does not take the necessary major actions to address this issue.

Neither patients nor caregivers are well served by the traditional regime of medical liability. Yet debates about liability reform have become nonproductive battles between pro-defendant and pro-plaintiff forces. Bovbjerg finds that health reform did nothing to alter that political dynamic, nor the underlying problems of preventable injury and defensive medicine.

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