A McMinnville jury awarded the family of a neglected nursing home resident a judgment in the amount of $4.1 million after finding the patient received negligent care at a National Healthcare Corporation nursing home. Apparently the Tennessee jury was so appalled by the treatment the also awarded the family a multimillion dollar punitive damage award. The judge, however, threw out almost all of the punitive damage award.
So how does this verdict impact the medical malpractice reform debate. Obviously, the proponents of medical malpractice verdict caps will say that this is an example of the need for a cap. However, if the treatment was so horrible that a jury felt this verdict was justified then what would a cap have accomplished. A cap would simply let the nursing home know that they can cut costs, neglect patients, increase their profits and never have any real threat of punishment. Corporations tend to place profits over people and it this is done in the nursing home industry in Tennessee then they need to be punished The only was to punish a nursing home is financially Take away the juries ability to do so and it will be much less likely that your loved ones will be treated with care. It will also make it difficult to find a lawyer to pursue a case because litigation is such an expensive process.