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Illinois Nursing Home Lawsuits Play No Role In Government Deficit

Our Chicago nursing home lawyers are used to the false claims that are made about lawsuits that attempt to vindicate the victims of poor care. For example, there remains a small group that strangely attempt to link negligence lawsuits, like those filed by nursing home victims, to the poor financial condition of many state and federal governments. The distorted logic claims that the cost of defending (and paying verdicts resulting from) these lawsuits ultimately requires an increase in the cost of care. Many local government help pay for that care, and therefore the lawsuits are at fault for the government deficit.

In reality, these strange claims are nothing more than desperate attempts by a small group of powerful interests to enact “tort reform” measures that would make it harder for average nursing home victims to be compensated for their losses. What is forgotten by those making these claims is that care at these facilities often remains abysmal. Focus should be shifted on improving care, not handcuffing victims.

The truth is that there are no real financial savings to be made by limiting the rights of Illinois nursing home abuse victims. As a recent Huffington Post article explains, the most generous analysis suggests that the latest tort reform effort (H.R. 5) will at best save less than one half of one percent of total medical costs. However that does not at all take into account the potential consequences of tort reform in terms of both finances and healthcare quality. The Congressional Budget Office has noted that the tort reform measures proposed in H.R. 5 may have damaging consequences on the actual healthcare system. The worsening care would then increase medical cost-beyond the small savings that might be found if there was no worry about lawsuits. In fact, some studies have shown that as many as 4,000 more citizens could be killed by poor care if these reform measures become law.

That means that not only are the claimed financial benefits non-existent, but there would be real consequences in life and death terms.

Our Chicago nursing home attorneys at Levin & Perconti know well that there are many more victims of poor nursing home care than those that ever file a lawsuit and seek vindication. All efforts are unacceptable that seek to make it even harder for those few to hold their facility accountable and seek fair redress. We encourage all those that care about decent standards to contact their federal representatives and urge that they work to defeat misguided tort reform measures like H.R. 5.

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