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August 16, 2000

The Past and Future of Medical Malpractice Litigation

Author Affiliations

Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Executive Deputy EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2000;284(7):827-829. doi:10.1001/jama.284.7.827

To the Editor: Dr Mohr1 argues that 3 medical and 3 legal factors sustain medical malpractice litigation. I believe that an additional factor is the modern attitude that values litigation above other approaches to resolving disputes. Individual and institutional members of society are increasingly litigious as is evidenced by caseload data from the National Center for State Courts.2 Recent tobacco court cases demonstrate that the government also is suing its own citizens to resolve disputes instead of using the legislative process.