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By Victoria Colliver, POLITICO 

May 9, 2022


MICRA ANALYSIS: An analysis released today by UCLA researchers suggests that California’s longtime cap on pain-and-suffering awards in malpractice cases could actually have contributed to an increase in malpractice cases over the past 50 years — potentially by weakening the deterrent effect of being sued.

UCLA researchers reviewed state Medi-Cal data on potential malpractice cases from huge screw-ups like mismatched blood-type infusions or objects left inside patients. The researchers found more of these preventable mistakes — about 16 percent more — in states where such caps exist.

Since California spent $1.5 billion on these kinds of medical mess-ups in 2018, the researchers suggested a 16 percent reduction could translate into a $245 million savings. The research comes as California gears up to adjust its 1970s cap of $250,000 to catch up with inflation.

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