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Public Statements

Issue Position: Health Care and Tort Reform

Issue Position

Location: Unknown

Under Gov. Perry, Texas has reformed its child protective services, insured more of Texas' needy children than ever before, and increased health care investments by more than $20 billion while promoting prevention and wellness programs to cut down on future health care costs. Gov. Perry has also led the most sweeping lawsuit reform in the nation, cracking down on junk asbestos claims and frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits. Now thousands more doctors, including specialists, are practicing in Texas, bringing greater access to quality health care for Texans.

* Cracking Down on Frivolous Lawsuits. Medical Liability Reform. In 2003, Gov. Perry led the fight to pass the most sweeping medical liability reforms in the nation. Since then, frivolous lawsuits against doctors and hospitals have dropped dramatically, insurance costs have fallen, and access to health care has greatly improved. - More Doctors. More Specialists. In 2007, the Texas Medical Board received a record 4,041 applications for physician licenses, and issued a record 3,324 licenses. The board topped that again the next year, granting a new record 3,621 licenses in 2008. Texas has added 215 obstetricians since 2003, and the number of obstetricians practicing in rural Texas has grown by 27 percent.

* Increased access in underserved areas. In 2009, Gov. Perry signed legislation to expand access to medical care in rural and medically underserved areas. House Bill 2154 creates a dedicated source of revenue to support education loan forgiveness for physicians who work in health professional shortage areas and provide services to Medicaid or CHIP recipients.

* Protecting Children. Over 2.4 million of Texas poorest children -- one out of every three children in the state -- are now covered under the Children's Health Insurance Program and Medicaid program.

* Texas Protects its Most Vulnerable Citizens. Texas overhauled state supported living centers, formerly known as state schools, to provide more oversight and protection for the residents of the centers and those in community-based services.

* Tough on Fraud. Gov. Perry authorized the creation of the Office of the Inspector General of the Health And Human Services Commission which saved taxpayers over $1.5 billion in fraud detection in government health care programs.

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