In attack on Perry, group claims tort reform made healthcare worse in Texas

The advocacy group Public Citizen charged Wednesday that limits on medical malpractice suits have made the healthcare system worse in Texas.

Tort reform composes almost all of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s healthcare platform, and supporters of liability reform often cite the state’s experience to argue that limiting jury awards will lower costs. Public Citizen says in a new report that the quality of healthcare in the state has actually gotten worse since Perry signed malpractice limits into law in 2003.


Premiums in Texas have risen by 51.7 percent, compared with a national average of 50 percent, the report says. It also says the number of doctors practicing in the state hasn’t grown as fast as the overall population. Perry, along with organizations such as the American Medical Association, often argues that curbing malpractice suits helps attract more doctors.

Texas also has the highest percentage of uninsured residents in the country.