Advocacy News

June 13, 2017

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House Committee
Approves FDA and
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Medical Liability Vote Expected This Week

Price Talks HHS Budget

State Corner: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia to Retroactively Punish Patients for “Unnecessary” ER Visits

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Medical Liability Vote Expected This Week

The full House of Representatives is expected to vote this week on H.R. 1215, the Protecting Access to Care Act, which contains comprehensive medical liability reforms that are critical to bringing down health care costs and ensuring access to care for all patients. Mirroring the successful reforms of California and Texas, the Protecting Access to Care Act will ensure that physicians and health care providers are able to provide vital medical services to all patients without the threat of meritless lawsuits, and health care services will remain affordable and available to all.

We need your help to urge members of Congress to support this critical bill.
Click here to take action.


The Congressional Budget Office has determined that H.R. 1215 would cut federal healthcare spending by $44 billion over 10 years and reduce the deficit by $50 billion over the same period of time. It will continue to provide full economic compensation to deserving patients, while putting an end to medical lawsuit abuse and maintaining access to vital medical services for all.

The Protecting Access to Care Act contains patient-friendly provisions that:

  • Limit attorney fees so that damage awards go to the patients in need;
  • Allow for the full and unlimited recovery of economic damages, including past and future
  • medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, etc.;
  • Allow for the periodic payment of damages.

In order to stop medical lawsuit abuse, the Protecting Access to Care Act would:

  • Set the statute of limitations at three years after the injury occurs or one year after it is discovered by the claimant, whichever comes first;
  • Place reasonable limits on the recovery amount of non-economic damages, such as damages awarded for pain and suffering, to $250,000.

Finally, to protect the rights of states that have already enacted comprehensive medical liability reforms or do so in the future, this legislation would protect existing and future state laws that meet or exceed the protections in the federal law; and protect existing and future state laws that specify a specific amount of compensatory damages or the total amount of damages that may be awarded in a health care lawsuit regardless of whether the amount is greater or lesser than $250,000.