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House Passes the Protecting Access To Care Act

Yesterday, I penned “Act Today to Stop H.R. 1215 from Destroying Your Rights.” Hours later, the House passed H.R. 1215 by a vote of 218 to 210. The bill now heads to the Senate for review.

Putting citizens at such risk, without the right to pursue litigation, is ludicrous and, viciously, anti-citizen. Tort reform measures show a distrust of the jury, the fundamental foundation of our Constitutional system. The court system is about justice; it is about fairness; it is about you, your precious family members, your rights, and theirs. The health care and tort system debate should not be focused on limiting the rights of those who are injured, maimed, or killed as the result of professional negligence. Instead, attention should be paid to why such medical malpractice occurs, and what types of reforms might reduce injury and medical-error rates. It stands to reason that there will be fewer injuries and fewer lawsuits if there are sufficient safety measures in place.

We have been complacent in the face of injustice for too long. No innocent victim’s rights should be negotiated. We must all be proactive in protecting our rights from being trampled on by the powerful health care industry and pro-insurance lobbies. The Constitution clearly guarantees the right to a trial by jury to all citizens under the 7th Amendment. Legislative manipulation of our judicial system on behalf of insurance and corporate lobbyists puts all of us at a significant disadvantage.

HR 1215, weakens the financial liabilities negligent hospitals, doctors, and medical corporations have to pay to innocent victims. If passed in the Senate, people who have been severely and often permanently injured through medical malpractice could not collect more than $250,000 in damages for their pain and suffering. These facts should not be ignored; you or a loved one could be personally affected someday.

As citizens of this country, we have the power to effect change. To protect your rights, contact your legislators and encourage them to vote NO on H.R 11215. Tell them that your vote in the next election is dependent upon their rejection of this terrible, anti-justice, legislation.

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