On Monday, March 24, 2014, a group funded exclusively by trial attorneys filed signatures with county registrars to qualify a measure for the November ballot that would significantly add to the overall number of medical lawsuits, increase costs for both health consumers and state taxpayers and reduce access to health care in rural and underserved communities across California.
ACHD’s Advocacy Committee unanimously voted to oppose the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act (MICRA) initiative, also known as the Troy & Alana Pack Patient Safety Act, as it:
- Is costly for consumers and taxpayers by “hundreds of millions of dollars annually”
- Will vastly increase the number of lawsuits filed in California due to the increased non-economic damages amount
- Is misleading voters to make it easier and more profitable for lawyers to sue doctors and hospitals
- Jeopardizes patient access to quality health care by causing doctors to leave the state and practice in places where malpractice insurance rates are lower and raising insurance costs
The initiative was immediately criticized by a growing coalition of doctors, dentists, hospitals, health providers, business groups, civil liberties groups, local governments, community clinics and Planned Parenthood as "too costly," "too deceptive," "too unworkable," and "jeopardizing patient access." According to California’s Independent Legislative Analyst, the proposed measure could increase state and local government health costs by “hundreds of millions of dollars annually.” A study by Bill Hamm, the former Legislative Analyst, concluded the measure could increase health care costs across all sectors by $9.9 billion per year, or roughly $1,000 for an average family of four.
As written, the measure will make it harder for community health clinics to provide access to quality care, to attract skilled physicians, or to offer specialist services to their patients.
ACHD needs your help in opposing this initiative. Here are some ways you can get involved in the campaign:
- Officially join the campaign and officially oppose the ballot measure
- Visit the campaign’s new website to get important facts and information that will help you spread the word about this costly measure
- Send an email to your organization's members, to your friends and/or to your colleagues encouraging them to sign up directly with the campaign to oppose the measure
- Contribute here to help fight the trial lawyers' measure
Please note that being a member of Californians Allied for Patient Protection does not automatically list you as a ballot measure opponent. Please sign up as an official opponent TODAY.
Please contact Amber Wiley with any questions or comments, via email or phone at (916) 266-5207.