Appeals court tosses New Jersey health law challenge

The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday upheld a lower court's decision to toss out a healthcare reform challenge from a New Jersey doctor and one of his patients.

The lawsuit, filed the day after the law was enacted last year, argues that Dr. Mario Criscito and an anonymous "Patient Roe" would be harmed by the law because the patient pays directly without relying on insurance. The law's individual mandate requiring that most people have insurance or pay a penalty, the complaint alleges, "will have a direct, substantial impact upon Dr. Criscito's medical practice, the manner in which he may, or may not, seek payment for his professional services and the manner in which he may render treatment to his patients."

The appeals court, however, ruled that the doctor and patient failed to show they would suffer "an actual or imminent 'concrete and particularized' injury."