Tort Reform & Counterfeit Mesh
Who is who, what is what? This is what you begin to wonder when you are involved in a product lawsuit. What are their motives? Whose side are they on? Well your guess is as good as mine.
While I was trying to learn more about tort law, there was so much mention of tort reform and I wondered what it all meant. Was it good or was it bad? So I began searching and trying to find answers. What I found was something that once again leads me to believe there is no truth nor justice when it comes to medical products law. It is all a game and all about making money.
I watch a show about lawyers on TV and they switch sides all the time. However I think it’s just TV that does this. But the more I read the more I know it is based on truth. So when I came across an article written on the 30th January 2016, (yes this year) I was not shocked any more. However, I wrote a blog about counterfeit mesh within a couple of days of when the news broke and that blog was January 15th 2016. You can read it here before you continue to understand why I am writing this blog.
Before I continue however, I want to say something. Everyone on Facebook wants to be the FIRST to break a story and share it. They ignore where it came from in the first place and they make out like they know something. However, they plagiarize all the time, just like Jane Akre does. In fact Jane Akre watches my blog like a hawk so she can find an easy subject to write about. I do the hard work, she takes it and turns it into hers. Nothing unusual there. Yesterday I posted a blog about Endo’s stocks falling. You can read it here I was very happy when I learned about it and I want you to learn HOW I found out.
Yesterday morning my daughter received a note from a mesh injured woman who stays on top of EVERYTHING. She shares things with Kim because she wondered why AKLRE had not written about it and she wanted women to know. So Kim posted that link on her Facebook page called Mesh Avenger and she sent me a note and told me to share it on my Mesh Angels page to inform injured women. I did. Then I thought about all the women who are NOT on Facebook and wrote a blog to share the article and how I felt.
You know it is hard for me to do this knowing full well that some have called my daughter names such as the Devil’s Spawn. This must make me and her father devils. How nice of them to say these things behind our backs. But I want you to know she is one of your GREATEST advocates beside me. Watching out to give you truth and justice and many women appreciate what she does and what she stands for and they share with her to help her do it. So when you read my blogs, remember this and know that without my writing for 6 years and her writing on www.stopmesh.com telling you the truth about what goes on, YOU would not know ANYTHING. You would be kept in the dark by those who are determined to make money from YOUR injured body, not just mine. Whether you like it or not, the TRUTH about all of this must be told. Not just about what mesh does to your body. Not only about the years of going from doctor to doctor and being ignored. But EVERYTHING, including the dirt behind it. Yes there is truckloads of dirt.
Without truth in every direction, these products will continue to do so much damage to women’s bodies. You can’t share truth in one way and hide the rest. The reason is simple. When cottage industries by those who are not injured get a good foothold, not only do they rake in money, but this WILL continue because it becomes profitable for so many. Without me spending hours to give you the truth, you would be left to die a very slow and painful death. My daughter is not a devil. She is part of a team of two who believes in truth and justice. So when you share links but ignore the real source, remember you are part of the destruction of women in the future. YOU are NOT doing YOUR part. YOU are part of the COVERUP!
So what did I find when going through links for hours just yesterday? I found that the same law firm who wants to go after Mesh Manufacturers for using counterfeit mesh, are also feathering their own nest and could care less about those who are injured by the mesh. Why? This is why.
Mike Hull, former outside counsel for Texans for Lawsuit Reform, is now working with Houston mass tort litigator Steve Mostyn on a transvaginal mesh class action.
Hull, partner in Hull Henricks in Austin, was a paid TLR lobbyist for many years who successfully influenced Texas lawmakers to pass some of the strictest tort reform bills in the nation, including 2003’s House Bill 4, which nearly wiped out the medical-malpractice litigation landscape in Texas. TLR, the most successful tort reform group in Texas, often vilifies Mostyn’s litigation tactics.
Mostyn and TLR spokeswoman Sherry Sylvester each didn’t return a call seeking comment. Hull, who resigned from TLR in November 2015, declined to comment for this article.
But Hull told the Austin American-Statesman in early January that he still considers himself a tort reform advocate.
“I am a fan of the work I did,” Hull said. “But that work was never intended to shut the courthouse door to people who have been victimized.”
Hull’s career change has turned heads among lawyers who worked closely with him in the legislature and the courtroom. They all said Hull is a great, intelligent lawyer who will be successful in his new endeavor. But some question Hull’s allegiance to the tort reform movement.
“I think that everyone engaged in that process should take notice that someone who has been at the forefront of tort reform for over a decade has now said, ‘Enough is enough,'” said Bryan Blevins, who was president of the Texas Trial Lawyers Association and lobbied against Hull’s positions during last year’s legislative session. “I think it says something when your chief legal presenter … when that person finally says, ‘I am not doing this anymore. My intention was never to bar the citizens of Texas access to justice.’ I don’t know how else to take that than to mean they were going too far.”
But not everyone perceives Hull’s move that way.
David Chamberlain, who lobbies voluntarily on behalf of the Texas Chapters of the American Board of Trial Advocates, said he thinks that TLR can’t do much else in the tort reform arena, spurring Hull to move on.
“I think that all the changes they set out to change were pretty much accomplished. That’s in large part to his credit,” Chamberlain said. “The other thing is that he was mostly a med-mal defense lawyer and to put it bluntly—he kind of lobbied himself out of a job.”
He explained that HB 4 drastically reduced the number of med-mal cases in Texas, along with Hull’s defense practice.
“If you can make an honest living doing something different—even though it’s drastically different, in terms of kind of philosophy—you’ve got to make a living,” said Chamberlain.
How lovely! So he wants to reform tort lawsuits to restrict everyone in Texas from being given proper compensation, in fact he seems very content in his actions. Read this again.
‘I am not doing this anymore. My intention was never to bar the citizens of Texas access to justice.’ I don’t know how else to take that than to mean they were going too far.”
How do I feel about this? Well, I truly think he is a worm and that is putting it nicely. This is what I want Mr. Hull and that law firm to know.
“You think people who are injured by doctors, hospitals and manufacturers should get away with this, because if you didn’t, you would never agree to this and you would work BLOODY hard to get rid of the reform. So I considered you and your now law firm SCUM OF THE EARTH! You only care about money. You could care less about people. So get off your high horse and admit you are just as much part of the injuries to women as everyone else is. Not only that Mr. Hull, but I am not normally this vindictive, but YOU Sir should have a terrible accident and the only way they can close your guts, is by the use of medical mesh. Then see how you fair. See how you writhe in pain and how your rich lifestyle will quickly ebb away. You Sir deserve it. You filled your pockets lobbying to change the tort law and you are now doing the same with this new law firm. You could care less about the people, you are all about riches. But riches can be taken from ANYONE!
So now that that is off my chest, what else does this article say?
As Hull lobbied for TLR, he simultaneously ran a private practice that focused on defense of mass torts in asbestos, breast implant, medical device and product liability matters, according to his firm’s website. Hull, who is board certified in personal injury and civil trial law, would defend pharmaceutical companies, health insurance carriers and med-mal defendants.
Hull’s new work closely matches that previous experience.
The class action, Stevens v. Boston Scientific Corp., filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia in Charleston, alleges that Boston Scientific Corp. and three other companies conspired together to import secretly from China a key ingredient for transvaginal mesh medical devices. A Texas-based company previously sold Boston Scientific the ingredient, Marlex, but stopped selling it because it wasn’t supposed to be permanently implanted in a person’s body.
Then Boston Scientific “made the fateful decision to smuggle counterfeit Marlex out of China,” alleged the class action. It claimed the company lied to Chinese and U.S. customs, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and women who received transvaginal mesh implants.
Now you can see just how easy it is for people without a conscience to switch when they smell money. You can read the entire article here
So what did tort reform do for TEXAS? It limits the amount of money we can receive in this State to $250.000. Are you shocked? You should be.
Now the purpose of Tort reform was to keep hospital cost down. However, did it really do that? So I went back to find answers.
A new study found no evidence that health care costs in Texas dipped after a 2003 constitutional amendment limited payouts in medical malpractice lawsuits, despite claims made to voters by some backers of tort reform.
The researchers, who include University of Texas law professor Charles Silver, examined Medicare spending in Texas counties and saw no reduction in doctors’ fees for seniors and disabled patients between 2002 and 2009. A 2003 voter campaign in Texas, and some congressional backers of Texas-style tort reform in every state, however, argued that capping damage awards would not only curb malpractice lawsuits and insurance costs for doctors, it would lower costs for patients while boosting their access to physicians.
Tort reform is a controversial topic likely to be resurrected by Republicans and doctors’ groups who hoped to make it part of the 2010 federal health care law.
The researchers’ findings come after a report last fall in which the Ralph Nader-founded consumer group Public Citizen said it found Medicare spending in Texas rose much faster than the national average after tort reform. Critics of that study said that tort reform leaders never promised health care spending would decline and noted that caps on damage awards brought steep drops in malpractice insurance rates for doctors and large increases in new doctors coming to Texas.
Another study yet to be published on physician supply and tort reform, also by Silver’s group, agrees that malpractice suits and payouts sharply dropped after tort reform. But that study strongly disputes claims of a mass exodus of Texas doctors before tort reform and huge increases afterward.
On the question of health care costs, Silver’s group focused on the federal government’s Medicare program, which makes up 20 percent of the $2.5 trillion spent on U.S. health care.
Don’t kid yourself this is not about politics and what the Hell is a foreign national doing in this group, deciding the fate of Americans?
That group — consisting of two Republicans, a Democrat and a foreign national, according to the researchers — analyzed data at the county level in Texas, said Tom Baker, author of a 2005 book, “The Medical Malpractice Myth,” and a professor of law and health sciences at the University of Pennsylvania.
“This is a very highly regarded study, and this team is highly regarded,” Baker said. The study was paid for by the researchers’ universities, Silver said, and the paper was published this month in the Journal of Empirical Legal Studies.
“Their results didn’t surprise me at all,” Baker said.
Medicare spending up
The researchers assumed that doctors who faced a higher risk of being sued — those in counties that had larger numbers of malpractice cases — would perform more tests and procedures than necessary to protect themselves from lawsuits. With tort reform, which limited damage awards against doctors, the need to practice such “defensive medicine” would decline, the argument goes.
But in comparing Texas counties in which doctors faced a higher risk of lawsuits with counties where the risk was lower, the researchers found no difference in Medicare spending after tort reform and indications that doctors in higher- risk counties did slightly more procedures.
“If tort reform reduces spending, it would have the biggest effect on high-risk counties,” Silver said. He noted that those tend to be large and urban.
“This is not a result we expected,” said Bernard Black, a co-author and a professor at Northwestern University’s Law School and Kellogg School of Management.
Health care spending has increased annually everywhere, the researchers said, including in the states with caps on malpractice payouts — now at 30, counting Texas, said David Hyman, a co-author and professor of law and medicine at the University of Illinois.
But, said Hyman, who worked on health policy for President George W. Bush at the Federal Trade Commission, “we found no evidence that Texas spending went up slower in comparison to all other states and may have had an increase.” INCREASED.
The researchers said their study suggests that Medicare payments to doctors in Texas rose 1 to 2 percent faster than the rest of the country, Black said. 1% to 2% FASTER.
Since tort reform, some Texas residents have complained that they cannot find a lawyer to pursue a malpractice case because of the $750,000 cap on payouts for pain, suffering, disfigurement and mental anguish. The limit often makes litigation cost prohibitive, patients and lawyers said. That concern was not raised in the paper, although the researchers said claims of huge malpractice payouts and rampant “frivolous” lawsuits before tort reform are greatly exaggerated by its advocates. TOO BAD IF YOU LIVE IN TEXAS.
Silver said he was “very pessimistic” that policymakers will heed the study. “The rhetoric on both sides tends to be very extreme,” he said.
Numbers of doctors
Jon Opelt, executive director of Texas Alliance for Patient Access, said tort reform in Texas has benefited patients by adding nearly 5,000 more physicians than can be accounted for by population growth. Opelt also said that patients have greater access to specialists in high-risk fields of medicine, and more emergency room doctors are willing to be on call because their fears of lawsuits have been reduced. YES bad doctors now flock to TEXAS because you can’t sue them and they can get away with all the injuries they do and use all the bad implants they like!
Before the 2003 reforms, “55 Texas counties saw a net loss of physicians and … some 99 counties lost a high-risk specialist,” Opelt said. “An estimated 5,000 high-risk specialists restricted their practice due to liability concerns.”
Silver and his fellow researchers’ unpublished study says Texas Medical Board data that Opelt cites on new physician applications and licenses do not account for doctors who left the state or retired, creating vacancies for their jobs; physicians who don’t treat patients but do research or administrative work; and physician growth compared with other states. When those factors are weighed, Texas saw the number of direct patient care doctors grow more slowly after tort reform than it did before, the study says. Afterward, Texas did slightly worse than other states in attracting doctors, the study says.
Linking tort reform to the health care costs is a “straw argument,” Opelt wrote in an email, saying his group never promised that. He noted the study says there could be an effect on health care spending in the future.
“We did not and we have not led lawmakers and voters astray,” he said. BULLSHIT!
Opelt’s group was the largest contributor to a campaign to persuade voters to approve tort reform, Yes on 12, donating $1.2 million.
“Yes on 12” materials said consumers should expect health costs to go down. “Your YES vote on Proposition 12 means: Lower costs and more security in our health care system,” one flier says. Another, in the form of a letter from Gov. Rick Perry, says that “Texans can help make health care more affordable and accessible” by voting for tort reform.
Opelt said his group had nothing to do with the fliers and directed questions to campaign leader Ted Delisi. He did not return a call.
The governor issued a statement through spokesman Josh Havens calling tort reform “a huge success.”
Contact Mary Ann Roser at 445-3619
So WE as always are caught in the middle and there really is NO JUSTICE in TEXAS when it comes to the medical industry.
You can read the rest of the crap here
So now you are thinking “What about my State”. Well eight States did NOT join in but the others all have caps. So if you live in one of those States you should thank your politicians for not screwing you. If you object to what is going on in your State, make sure you find out who the politicians are who worked on it and never vote for them again.
Take time to read up on your State. Here is the link
So let’s see who will share this on Facebook or who will pick out the links and make out it is THEIR source. Remember if you don’t do your part and share this blog, I will know who you are when I see the links I gathered, float through Facebook.