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The welfare effects of medical malpractice liability

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  • Lakdawalla, Darius N.
  • Seabury, Seth A.
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    Abstract

    We use variation in the generosity of local juries to identify the causal impact of medical malpractice liability on social welfare. Growth in malpractice payments contributed at most 5% points to the 33% total real growth in medical expenditures from 1990 to 2003. On the other hand, malpractice leads to modest mortality reductions; the value of these more than likely exceeds the costs of malpractice liability. Therefore, reducing malpractice liability is unlikely to have a major impact on health care spending, and unlikely to be cost-effective over conventionally accepted values of a statistical life.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Review of Law and Economics.

    Volume (Year): 32 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 356-369

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:irlaec:v:32:y:2012:i:4:p:356-369

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/irle

    Related research

    Keywords: Medical malpractice liability; Medical expenditures; Defensive medicine;

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