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Medical Malpractice$
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Frank A. Sloan and Lindsey M. Chepke

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780262195720

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262195720.001.0001

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An Increased Threat of Lawsuits and Higher Premiums: The Consequences

An Increased Threat of Lawsuits and Higher Premiums: The Consequences

(p.51) 3 An Increased Threat of Lawsuits and Higher Premiums: The Consequences
Medical Malpractice

A. Sloan Frank

M. Chepke Lindsey

The MIT Press

This chapter presents evidence on two of the five myths of medical malpractice listed in Chapter 1. It first addresses the myth that only “good” doctors are sued, showing that both high- and low-quality physicians are sued for medical malpractice. The second myth is that medical care is costly because of medical malpractice. At most, only a small part of the growth in real expenditures on personal health services in the United States can be attributed to medical malpractice. The chapter considers whether there is empirical evidence that medical malpractice creates access barriers to health care services and increases the cost of such services. Much of the conventional wisdom is that there is clearly a link of sufficient importance to require statutory changes.

Keywords:   medical malpractice, myths, health care quality, medical care quality, health care costs, physicians, quality of care, health care services, health care access

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