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Medical Justice Services Inc. Joins Center for Health Transformation
Date:9/24/2007

Medical Justice, which advocates for physicians, joins forces with national organization founded by former Speaker Newt Gingrich, which advocates for

changes in healthcare to benefit all Americans

GREENSBORO, N.C., Sept. 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Medical Justice Services Inc., which has helped physicians successfully defend themselves against meritless medical malpractice cases for the past five years, has joined the Center for Health Transformation, a national organization dedicated to transforming the current healthcare system into a 21st Century Intelligent Health System that saves lives and saves money.

"Whether healthcare should change is not a question anymore," said Jeffrey Segal, MD, a neurosurgeon and the founder of Medical Justice Services Inc. "Healthcare value is created by decisions based on what physicians find in examining rooms, not on what might be said two years from now in a courtroom."

Medical Justice Services is working on a new idea, HealthCare 2.0, which would provide health insurance for the 47 million Americans who don't have it, fund needed patient safety programs and ensure that patients and their families would be taken care of financially should they die or become disabled -- all without additional funding.

The Center for Health Transformation was launched in 2003 as a project of the Gingrich Group, a consulting firm founded by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. The Center's membership is made up of healthcare providers, government leaders, large and small employers, universities and others all dedicated to changing the dynamic of the current health and healthcare system.

During this coming year, the Center will be focusing its efforts on health justice, making Medical Justice and its expertise a welcome addition, said Wayne Oliver, the Health Justice Project Director at the Center.

"We have a number of high profile success stories but we also have a lot to do in creating the 21st Century Intelligent System of Health Justice," said Oliver. "As a company, Medical Justice has a compelling record of changing the dynamics with respect to frivolous lawsuits. These types of suits drive up the cost of healthcare, decrease access to necessary services and burden the judicial system."

Medical Justice's methods use well-established contract law. Patients agree not to file meritless cases. If a genuine dispute over care does arise, each side agrees to use only expert witnesses from their physician's medical specialty, who will honor the ethical requirements of their specialty society to give only truthful testimony.

Virtually all patients are comfortable signing such a contract. And it works: Medical Justice plan members are sued at a rate of under 2% per year, far lower than the national average of 8-10% per year.

From those successes has come HealthCare 2.0, which is focused on eliminating high-cost defensive medicine, which is unnecessary tests, procedures, and referrals primarily intended to defend the doctor if sued.

Funds currently spent on defensive medicine would be redistributed to insure all the uninsured, fund patient safety programs, and provide quick, predictable remedies for patients who are injured.

Under HealthCare 2.0, patients would participate in a voluntary program in which they agree to transfer any potential right to sue for medical malpractice, either to an insurance carrier or a neutral third party. In exchange, the patient receives a lower health insurance premium, subsidies for disability and life insurance and guarantees that patient safety systems would be implemented.

The carrier (or neutral third party) can only sue -- and then only under agreed-upon limits of recovery -- if the physician ignores previously agreed- upon cost-effective treatment guidelines, the patient has been injured and there is evidence of negligence. If there is a recovery, some or all of it goes to the patient.

If the patient is left disabled or dies -- whether or not the physician was responsible -- the disability and life insurances are quickly triggered, keeping the patient and his family from financial ruin.

A blueprint will soon be proposed for launching HealthCare 2.0 as a pilot project.

Ideas like HealthCare 2.0, which would dramatically change the American healthcare and medical liability legal system, are entirely aligned with the Center's philosophy, which is that a system wide transformation -- and not quick fixes -- will be required to shape the healthcare system of the future.

"We need a system where doctors can provide care for patients, at a reasonable cost and without interference," said Segal. "Nothing is more important than your health -- and nothing should be a higher priority for our country than ensuring that high-quality healthcare is available to all."

Run by physicians for physicians, Medical Justice is a membership-based organization that offers proactive services designed to deter proponents of frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits, as well as a proven strategy for successful countersuit prosecution.

Please visit our website at http://www.medicaljustice.com. Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s), click appropriate link. Jeffrey J. Segal, MD http://profnet.prnewswire.com/Subscriber/ExpertProfile.aspx?ei=48234


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SOURCE Medical Justice Services Inc.
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