One of the major arguments against California Prop 46 or the Pack Act is the cost that will be incurred by hospitals, businesses and taxpayers. To clear the air, it is important to note that community clinics will not be affected by Prop 46. Almost all clinics are protected by the Federal Tort Claims Act from medical malpractice lawsuits. Only 0.73% of a clinic’s budget goes toward insurance and most of that is to cover property liability. Lastly, clinics do not handle high risk procedures such as child births and major surgeries. This means that clinics will not have to be concerned with any increased costs if Prop 46 is passed in California.
Total healthcare spending is $230 billion while medical malpractice insurance premiums are only $544 million. This means there is a good chance that medical costs won’t increase yet there will be an economic gain. All financial issues aside, there is no reason doctors and medical professionals should not be held accountable for their actions. This is especially true if they have abused drugs or alcohol before coming to work or while on the job.
Below is a video from the hit TV Lost. “Losties” can remember Jack Shephard’s father, Christian Shephard abuses alcohol while on the job. There was one episode in which there was a major issue in the operating room due to the fact that Dr. Christian Shephard had too much to drink before entering the surgery. Any doctor that puts their patients in harm’s way in this manner should be help accountable for their actions. If they are not held accountable this type of behavior will continue.
As we continue to move towards the vote on November 4th, 2014 we will document cases in which drug testing would have changed the ultimate outcome. If you have any feelings or experiences with this type of situation please feel free to comment below as we would love the dialogue.
Our friend, Mario Madrid, a Houston criminal defense attorney has chimed in stating that non-economic damages in Texas are at $250,000 which is extremely low as well. Most states in which the damages are this low will likely have some push back in the next few years.