RALEIGH, N.C., Feb. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- North Carolina Advocates for Justice today released the first in a series of television commercials.
The commercial opposes Senate Bill 33 – sponsored by Senators Tom Apodaca and Bob Rucho – which changes North Carolina law to favor insurance companies, corporate rest home owners, hospitals and doctors who commit medical malpractice.
Dick Taylor, CEO of NCAJ, stated: "This bill is hard to believe: It gives emergency room doctors and hospitals complete immunity for negligence. What does that mean? It means if an emergency room doctor – out of clear and undisputed negligence – renders unreasonable care and cripples, maims or even kills a patient, there is nothing anyone can do. The victim has no rights. He has no claim to restitution – even from the negligent hospital.
"Second, this bill puts a 'cap' on the amount of damages a jury can award for catastrophic life-changing results of medical malpractice. Let's be clear about what that means: It means if – because of sheer negligence – a patient is disfigured, mutilated or maimed, or even brain damaged or loses a limb, the patient's legal rights are curtailed by Senator Rucho and Apodaca's bill. For example, their bill specifically states if a jury awards a patient more than $250,000 (for, say, the loss of a limb) the verdict will be automatically reduced to $250,000 without the jury that heard the evidence even knowing. In effect politicians in Raleigh will have decided the verdict – not the jury.
"Two former Supreme Court Justices, former Chief Justice Beverly Lake and former Justice Edward Brady, both conservative Republicans, have said the Rucho-Apodaca bill is unconstitutional – because State Senators don't have the power to overrule juries."
NCAJ's commercial will begin airing on Saturday, February 19. It will be followed by additional ads in legislators' districts. For more information, please contact [email protected], and visit www.LetJuriesDecide.com.
SOURCE NC Advocates for Justice