In virtually every appearance he makes, presidential candidate and Texas Governor Rick Perry talks about how Texas has very restrictive laws preventing victims of malpractice from seeking justice in the court system. Unfortunately, the “Perry Experiment” in Texas is a total failure.
Medicare spending in Texas has gone up faster than any other place in the country. One would think that with less litigation physicians would be uninterested in defensive medicine, i.e., performing tests, etc. to prevent being sued. If that’s true, why is Medicare spending in Texas higher than other areas of the country?
The number of primary care physicians practicing in Texas has remained flat. Doctors aren’t flocking to Texas because their malpractice laws favor insurance companies.
Premiums for health insurance in Texas have risen faster than around the country.
The reason for these facts is because restricting the ability of an injured victim to seek redress in the court system does not affect insurance premiums. It does not affect the cost of malpractice insurance. It does not reduce health care spending.
Next time a Republican candidate talks about the need for tort reform, ask them why based on the failure of the Texas Experiment.
The information contained here is from “A Failed Experiment, Health Care in Texas has Worsened in Key Respects Since State Instituted Liability Caps in 2003,” Public Citizen (October 2011) www.citizen.org.