Is the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Altering Medical Malpractice?

Posted on July 18, 2014 by Shapiro Law Group

There have been countless opinions on the validity and impact of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”), but one area that has not received as much attention is the impact that the ACA will have on medical malpractice. There seems to be a near consensus that the ACA will result in more medical practice, as reported by Insurance Journal, and we will explore some of the reasons for this below.

Through April of this year somewhere between seven and eight million people signed up for healthcare insurance through the exchanges. About one-fourth of people that signed up did not have insurance before.

Judging these metrics, it is predicted that within a few more years, more than 22 million people will gain health insurance. As such, one reason for an increase in medical malpractice is simply the sheer increase in individuals having insurance and receiving treatment for differing ailments.

Another important factor is the doctor-patient relationship becoming lessened. America’s old model of healthcare was a single doctor, who diagnosed a patient’s problems and then participated actively in most if not all steps in treatment. America’s new trend focuses on hospitalists, doctors who monitor the hospital stays of patients.

There are differing individuals at every step, physicians for diagnoses, surgeons for operations, nurses for intermediary roles and hospitalists during the patients hospital stay and recovery period. Patients are now much less likely to be treated by one individual, and this bears medical malpractice risks for patients as they are transitioned from doctor to doctor.

Lastly, hospitals themselves are becoming more at risk for medical malpractice. The current trend is a shrinking amount of physician practices as they are being bought up by hospitals. When you couple all of this with an already overburdened system, you can see why medical malpractice will rise.

If the unfortunate happens and you are subjected to possible medical malpractice, then you should not hesitate to get in touch with an experienced medical malpractice attorney. Contact us if you believe that you have experienced medical malpractice; no one deserves to be treated by subpar care.


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