Malpractice Costly, but not a Silver Bullet in Health Care

Dr. John Vigil was one of two doctors that appeared on a panel with me at Rep. Martin Heinrich’s town hall meeting last summer (video available here). (Remember the good old days when Obama and Congressional Democrats actually cared what form health care reform took rather than just attempting to pass any health care reform they could muster up the votes for?)

Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised when I sat on that panel to learn that Rep. Heinrich had not stacked the panel with pro-government reform proponents. Dr. Vigil in particular impressed me. Well, in today’s Albuquerque Journal, Dr. Vigil explains that medical malpractice, while not solving all of America’s health care problems, could have a significant, positive impact in terms of cost savings of $20-$30 billion annually or more.

Tort reform, as one component of other market-based reforms, could have a significant, positive impact on costs and quality, but as we have seen since Scott Brown’s election in Massachusetts, Obama is pushing harder than ever, regardless of what that “reform” ultimately looks like.