Pa. Doctors, Patients Rally for Med-Mal Tort Reform

October 7, 2002

Physicians rallied in two Pennsylvania cities to protest increasing medical malpractice liability insurance rates, claiming emergency room services in the state could be severely scaled back if nothing is done.

The Associated Press reports that in Scranton, doctors and patients held a demonstration as a medical center there attempts to obtain coverage for 10 emergency room physicians whose current policies will be canceled.

In Philadelphia, doctors urged passage of legislation limiting awards in medical malpractice lawsuits to ease rates.

Physicians of various disciplines, including orthopedic surgeons, neurosurgeons, and obstetricians, are also warning that higher malpractice liability rates may force them to leave the state or cut back services.

A spokesman for the state House Majority Leader John Perzel noted that legislation imposing limits on damages would require a constitutional amendment.

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