Click here to close now.




















Welcome!

News Feed Item

Fla. Supreme Court Rules Medical Malpractice Damage Cap Unconstitutional, says Consumer Watchdog Campaign

California Voters Will Have Next Chance To Restore Patients' Rights At Ballot In November

SANTA MONICA, Calif., March 13, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Californians should have the same right as Floridians to equal protection under the law in cases of medical negligence, said Consumer Watchdog Campaign today after the Florida Supreme Court ruled the state's cap on medical negligence damages is unconstitutional.  Signatures will be turned in beginning next week for a ballot measure that would increase protections for harmed California patients by indexing the state's 38-year-old damage cap for inflation.

"It's outrageous that a driver harmed in an auto accident in California has more rights than a patient killed by a negligent doctor. The Florida Supreme Court has recognized this and so should California's legislature. If the legislature fails to act in the next 12 days, the voters will have the chance to restore those rights," said Carmen Balber, executive director of Consumer Watchdog Campaign.

Next week, Bob Pack will begin turning in over 830,000 signatures to qualify the Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act for this November's ballot. Pack lost his two young children, Troy and Alana, to a drugged driver who was overprescribed narcotics by multiple doctors at the same Kaiser hospital.

The Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act would:

  • Index for inflation the medical negligence damage cap set by the legislature in California in 1975
  • Require random drug and alcohol testing of doctors, and testing after an adverse event in a hospital
  • Require physicians to report suspected drug or alcohol abuse at work by a colleague
  • Mandate that physicians check the state's prescription drug database before prescribing narcotics and other addictive drugs to first-time patients

An opinion piece in the New York Times today about a doctor addicted to prescription drugs who infected patients with Hepatitis C after injecting himself with their painkiller syringes argued that doctors should be randomly drug tested.

The Florida Supreme Court ruling came in a case involving a woman who died after severe blood loss during childbirth. The Court found that a 2003 law limiting damages in wrongful death medical negligence cases violates the Equal Protection Clause in Florida's constitution. Article 1, Section 7(a) of California's constitution guarantees "equal protection of the laws."

In its decision, the Court wrote: "At the present time, the cap on noneconomic damages serves no other purpose other than to arbitrarily punish the most grievously injured or their surviving family members.

"Moreover, it has never been demonstrated that there was a proper predicate for imposing the burden of supporting the Florida legislative scheme upon the shoulder of the person and families who have been most severely injured and died as a result of medical negligence.

"Health care policy that relies upon discrimination against Florida families is not rational or reasonable when it attempts to utilize caps to create unreasonable classifications."

The Court also wrote that there was no evidence substantiating the purported medical malpractice crisis used by the Florida legislature to justify enacting the cap.

Wrote the Court: "The Florida Legislature attempted to justify the cap on noneconomic damages by claiming that 'Florida is in the midst of a medical malpractice insurance crisis of unprecedented magnitude.'"

It continued: "Our consideration of the factors and circumstances involved demonstrates that the conclusions reached by the Florida Legislature as to the existence of a medical malpractice crisis are not fully supported by available data. Instead, the alleged interest of health care being unavailable is completely undermined by authoritative government reports. Those government reports have indicated that the numbers of physicians in both metropolitan and non-metropolitan areas have increased."

Medical malpractice insurance companies and the physician lobby make the same unsubstantiated claims about the damage cap protecting patients' access to health care in California, said Balber.

Learn more about the Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act ballot measure at www.PackAct.org

SOURCE Consumer Watchdog Campaign

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
With the proliferation of connected devices underpinning new Internet of Things systems, Brandon Schulz, Director of Luxoft IoT – Retail, will be looking at the transformation of the retail customer experience in brick and mortar stores in his session at @ThingsExpo. Questions he will address include: Will beacons drop to the wayside like QR codes, or be a proximity-based profit driver? How will the customer experience change in stores of all types when everything can be instrumented and a...
It’s been proven time and time again that in tech, diversity drives greater innovation, better team productivity and greater profits and market share. So what can we do in our DevOps teams to embrace diversity and help transform the culture of development and operations into a true “DevOps” team? In her session at DevOps Summit, Stefana Muller, Director, Product Management – Continuous Delivery at CA Technologies, answered that question citing examples, showing how to create opportunities for ...
As more and more data is generated from a variety of connected devices, the need to get insights from this data and predict future behavior and trends is increasingly essential for businesses. Real-time stream processing is needed in a variety of different industries such as Manufacturing, Oil and Gas, Automobile, Finance, Online Retail, Smart Grids, and Healthcare. Azure Stream Analytics is a fully managed distributed stream computation service that provides low latency, scalable processing of ...
Everyone talks about continuous integration and continuous delivery but those are just two ends of the pipeline. In the middle of DevOps is continuous testing (CT), and many organizations are struggling to implement continuous testing effectively. After all, without continuous testing there is no delivery. And Lab-As-A-Service (LaaS) enhances the CT with dynamic on-demand self-serve test topologies. CT together with LAAS make a powerful combination that perfectly serves complex software developm...
Skeuomorphism usually means retaining existing design cues in something new that doesn’t actually need them. However, the concept of skeuomorphism can be thought of as relating more broadly to applying existing patterns to new technologies that, in fact, cry out for new approaches. In his session at DevOps Summit, Gordon Haff, Senior Cloud Strategy Marketing and Evangelism Manager at Red Hat, discussed why containers should be paired with new architectural practices such as microservices rathe...
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Any Ops team trying to support a company in today’s cloud-connected world knows that a new way of thinking is required – one just as dramatic than the shift from Ops to DevOps. The diversity of modern operations requires teams to focus their impact on breadth vs. depth. In his session at DevOps Summit, Adam Serediuk, Director of Operations at xMatters, Inc., will discuss the strategic requirements of evolving from Ops to DevOps, and why modern Operations has begun leveraging the “NoOps” approa...
As more intelligent IoT applications shift into gear, they’re merging into the ever-increasing traffic flow of the Internet. It won’t be long before we experience bottlenecks, as IoT traffic peaks during rush hours. Organizations that are unprepared will find themselves by the side of the road unable to cross back into the fast lane. As billions of new devices begin to communicate and exchange data – will your infrastructure be scalable enough to handle this new interconnected world?
In today's digital world, change is the one constant. Disruptive innovations like cloud, mobility, social media, and the Internet of Things have reshaped the market and set new standards in customer expectations. To remain competitive, businesses must tap the potential of emerging technologies and markets through the rapid release of new products and services. However, the rigid and siloed structures of traditional IT platforms and processes are slowing them down – resulting in lengthy delivery ...
In their Live Hack” presentation at 17th Cloud Expo, Stephen Coty and Paul Fletcher, Chief Security Evangelists at Alert Logic, will provide the audience with a chance to see a live demonstration of the common tools cyber attackers use to attack cloud and traditional IT systems. This “Live Hack” uses open source attack tools that are free and available for download by anybody. Attendees will learn where to find and how to operate these tools for the purpose of testing their own IT infrastructu...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IceWarp will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IceWarp, the leader of cloud and on-premise messaging, delivers secured email, chat, documents, conferencing and collaboration to today's mobile workforce, all in one unified interface
Whether you like it or not, DevOps is on track for a remarkable alliance with security. The SEC didn’t approve the merger. And your boss hasn’t heard anything about it. Yet, this unruly triumvirate will soon dominate and deliver DevSecOps faster, cheaper, better, and on an unprecedented scale. In his session at DevOps Summit, Frank Bunger, VP of Customer Success at ScriptRock, will discuss how this cathartic moment will propel the DevOps movement from such stuff as dreams are made on to a prac...
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
SYS-CON Events announced today that G2G3 will exhibit at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit Silicon Valley, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Based on a collective appreciation for user experience, design, and technology, G2G3 is uniquely qualified and motivated to redefine how organizations and people engage in an increasingly digital world.
Consumer IoT applications provide data about the user that just doesn’t exist in traditional PC or mobile web applications. This rich data, or “context,” enables the highly personalized consumer experiences that characterize many consumer IoT apps. This same data is also providing brands with unprecedented insight into how their connected products are being used, while, at the same time, powering highly targeted engagement and marketing opportunities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nathan Trel...