Editor: Pennsylvania doctors and consumers should be thrilled that the number of medical-malpractice lawsuits has fallen in the commonwealth (“Insurance rates for doctors shrinking,” Nov. 16). Meaningful tort reforms — of the sort advanced by the Keystone State in the past few years — are an effective way to reduce health-care costs for ordinary patients.
But Pennsylvania has a long way to go. The state has one of the riskiest litigation climates in the country, medical-malpractice reforms notwithstanding. It’s no surprise then that Pennsylvania has among the highest monetary tort losses in the nation — more than $7.5 billion annually.
Further tort reforms — like tighter caps on damage awards — are necessary to improve health care in Pennsylvania. Without such reforms, Pennsylvania’s consumers can expect ever-rising costs and worsening treatment options.
LAWRENCE J. McQUILLAN
DIRECTOR, BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC STUDIES
PACIFIC RESEARCH INSTITUTE