The Assault on Managed Care: Vicarious Liability, Class Actions and the Patient's Bill of Rights
Posted: 5 Mar 2002
Public dissatisfaction with managed care has produced a number of legal initiatives that would increase the overall level of public regulation of managed care organizations. Among other things, these initiatives would limit the scope of remedial preemption under ERISA, expand the doctrines of vicarious liability and implied agency, adopt a general "patient's bill of rights," and subject managed care organizations to a mix of class actions by disappointed plan participants. This paper argues that most of these initiatives are ill-conceived, in the sense that they do not hold any realistic possibility of improving the performance of the health care system relative to the current set of tort and contract doctrines that are now in place.
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