Once again resorting to lies and heartless exploitation of tragedy, the trial lawyers are launching an all-out attack on California’s medical malpractice tort reform known as MICRA (the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act).  On billboards, in the news, online, and in direct mailings (using corpse toe tags) the trial lawyers’ front organization Consumer Watchdog falsely claims that MICRA’s reasonable $250,000 limit on ill-defined “non-economic” damages limits the value of a life and shields bad physicians by discouraging lawyers from taking cases.  They omit MICRA’s provisions providing unlimited compensation for all present and future economic losses, and that fact that meritless litigation remains plentiful even with MICRA’s cap.  The enduring public policy principle served by MICRA’s cap on non-economic damages is that it prevents precious health care dollars from being diverted into trial lawyers’ pockets.  Yet while the majority of the California Legislature supports MICRA for this reason, the trial lawyers seek to quadruple MICRA’s cap through legislation or a multi-million dollar initiative battle.  They have hired top-gun campaign managers and lobbyists, and as a result the CMA and ACCMA are taking their threat seriously.  You can support the ACCMA and CMA’s defense of MICRA by doing the following:

  • Tell your patients how MICRA keeps malpractice insurance affordable so you can practice medicine
  • Support CALPAC, so MICRA supporters get elected to go to Sacramento – www.calpac.org
  • Ask your medical staff to contribute to CMA’s Political Education Fund (mail to Political Education Fund, c/o CMA, 1201 J Street, Suite 275, Sacramento, 95814), the Hospital Association will match it
  • Tell nonmembers to join ACCMA/CMA – there is strength in numbers – go to www.accma.org

We expect a protracted battle to defend MICRA, and will keep you informed of further developments.