House Passes Bill to Help Curb Lawsuit Abuse Against Nursing Homes
1/18/2012
HARRISBURG – Noting that nursing homes in Pennsylvania provide care and services to more than 80,000 Pennsylvanians daily, Majority Leader Mike Turzai said the House today passed a measure aimed at helping to protect long-term care facilities in Pennsylvania from targeted lawsuit abuse by limiting the amount of punitive damages that may be awarded in medical professional liability cases.

“It’s unfortunate, but there are some people who look for deep pockets as a way to make themselves wealthy. Through simple, reasonable and responsible actions we are targeting lawsuit abuses to try to put an end to deep pocket frivolous lawsuits,” Turzai said. “The top goal for House Republicans is to improve Pennsylvania’s economic and health care climate.”

House Bill 1907 simply applies the provisions for physicians relating to punitive damages to long-term care providers, including personal care homes, assisted living communities, long-term care nursing facilities, care agencies, health care agencies and hospices. The bill would limit punitive damages to no more than 200 percent of the compensatory damages awarded in the case.

The legislation contains one exception: if the plaintiff alleges “intentional misconduct,” the punitive damage protections would NOT apply.

“This bill is important for two reasons. It can help reduce frivolous litigation, and it shifts resources back to patient care where they should be focused,” Turzai said. “We are sending a strong message that Pennsylvania will no longer tolerate people who want to abuse the system for their own financial benefit.”

State Representative Mike Turzai
28th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact: Stephen Miskin 
smiskin@pahousegop.com
717.705.1852
PAHouseGOP.com
Twitter: www.Twitter.com/SAM1963
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