HOUSE COMMITTEE ON JUDICIARY

 

 

March 17, 2003   Hearing Room 357

1:00 p.m. Tapes  86 - 88

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. Max Williams, Chair

Rep. Gordon Anderson, Vice-Chair

Rep. Robert Ackerman, Vice-Chair

Rep. Jeff Barker

Rep. Bob Jenson

Rep. Jerry Krummel

Rep. Greg Macpherson

Rep. Floyd Prozanski

Rep. Lane Shetterly

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  Bill Joseph, Counsel

Ann Martin, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURE/ISSUES HEARD:            HB 2492 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2493 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2494 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2495 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2496 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2497 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2498 Public Hearing

                                                HB 2591 Public Hearing

 

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 86, A

003

Vice-Chair Anderson

Calls the meeting to order at 1:14 p.m. Opens a public hearing on HB 2492, 2493, 2494, 2495, 2496, 2497, 2498 and HB 2591.

HB 2492, 2493, 2494, 2495, 2496, 2497, 2498 and 2591 PUBLIC HEARING

014

Gwen Dayton

Vice-President, Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems. Submits testimony and testifies on HB 2492, 2493, 2494, 2495, 2498   and 2591 (EXHIBIT A).

015

Mike Crew

General Counsel, Oregon Medical Association (OMA). Testifies on HB 2492 and HB 2497.

100

Dr. Michael Bowen

Obstetrician/Gynecologist, Salem. Submits testimony and testifies on HB 2492, 2494 and 2497 (EXHIBIT B).

270

Rep. Krummel

Asks Dr. Bowen how long after a baby is delivered is the doctor liable for injury.

277

Dr. Bowen

Answers that he is not sure.

292

Dayton

Continues her testimony in support of the bills.

341

Vice-Chair Anderson

Asks who would make the determination if testimony was scientifically based.

344

Dayton

Answers that the court would need to make that determination.

346

Rep. Shetterly

Asks if these are all foundational points that the court already makes a determination on.

354

Dayton

Says these are foundational questions that are not contained in the law currently.

358

Crew

Responds that as a general proposition, the court should make a determination on expert testimony, particularly scientific testimony,  before it’s put to the jury.

397

Rep. Barker

Asks about best practices or evidenced-based testimony.

407

Crew

Explains tests on testimony.

422

Dayton

Concludes with her testimony in support of HB 2494.

487

Crew

Says that the OMA supports HB 2492, 2493, 2494 and 2495.

TAPE 87, A

047

Rep. Jenson

Asks about the support of HB 2495.

055

Crew

Answers that this limitation in California has worked well.

060

Rep. Prozanski

Asks Mr. Crew if he could provide the data on the poll as well as the questions that were asked.

064

Crew

Says that he will ask the OMA if they can make that available to the committee. Continues his testimony in support of HB 2496.

081

Crew

Discusses HB 2498 and HB 2591.

152

Vice-Chair Anderson

Asks how HB 2591 interfaces with the federal bill.

159

Dayton

Says that most of the issues being discussed are contained in the federal bill.

165

Rep. Jenson

Asks about HB 2591.

188

Crew

Answers that the bill does call for interest to be added back.

200

Rep. Macpherson

Asks if there is a predominant pattern that there is a structured settlement of many personal injury awards today.

211

Crew

Explains that structured settlements are the current practice.

235

Dayton

States that the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems  supports HB 2495, 2591 and 2498 in addition to the bills she testified on.

260

Glenn Rodriguez

Primary Care Physician and Chief Medical Officer, Providence Health System. Submits testimony and testifies in support of HB 2492, 2494 and 2497 (EXHIBIT C).

TAPE 86, B

003

Rodriguez

Continues his testimony on HB 2492, 2494 and 2497.

024

Vice-Chair Ackerman

Asks what the gross revenue was for Mr. Rodriguez’ operations from 2001-2002. Asks if the increased gross has to do with the increase in medical malpractice insurance.

037

Rodriguez

Answers it is true that medical malpractice costs are proportionate to the amount of work done. Says he does not have exact numbers.

046

Vice-Chair Ackerman

Asks how they insure.

050

Rodriguez

Answers that they self-insure up to an initial dollar limit then they buy external insurance in layers.

056

Rep. Shetterly

Comments that the costs need to be addressed that are putting at risk our ability to provide medical care in rural communities and medical care in the specialty areas.

098

Jeff Heatherington

Director, Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of Oregon. Testifies in support of bills.

122

Vice-Chair Ackerman

Asks Mr. Heatherington who the major medical insurance carrier is for his clients/members.

124

Heatherington

Answers that it’s either CNA or Northwest Mutual.

130

Rep. Shetterly

Comments that we are talking about taking some first steps on some long-term changes and not addressing the real issue of cost of providing medical care in our rural communities.

148

Rep. Jenson

Discusses living in rural Oregon. Says that some professionals want to leave rural Oregon for cities.

194

Rep. Krummel

Asks Mr. Heatherington how many members are there in the Osteopathic Association.

196

Heatherington

Answers about 420.

200

Rep. Krummel

Asks him if he has looked at the idea of a Professional Liability Fund.

204

Heatherington

Answers, no, they have not because the members are opposed. Says that it would be astronomical to get the thing started.

212

Jonathan Hoffman

Attorney, Martin Bischoff. Submits testimony and testifies on HB 2492,  2493 and HB 2494 (EXHIBITS D & E).

TAPE 87, B

010

Hoffman

Continues his testimony.

016

Martha Hodgkinson

Attorney. Testifies on HB 2492, 2493 and 2494.

070

Rep. Barker

Asks if we are the last state to have trial by ambush.

084

Hoffman

Answers, yes.

092

Rep. Prozanski

Asks Mr. Hoffman about HB 2494 in conjunction with HB 2493.

100

Hoffman

Explains expert disclosure and the change that was made in the Daubert Decision.

218

Rep. Prozanski

Asks if what he wants is for the judge to decide expert testimony.

223

Hoffman

Says that the jury is the ultimate decider of facts, but the judge determines whether something satisfies the evidentiary threshold.

245

Rep. Krummel

Asks how often he has seen a jury made up of medical professionals.

254

Hodgkinson

Answers that since the lawyers have some control over who is going to be the jury, typically there are not very many doctors sitting on a jury.

278

Larry Wobbrock

Attorney. Submits testimony and testifies in opposition to HB 2494 (EXHIBIT F).

422

David Miller

Oregon Trial Lawyers Association. Submits testimony and testifies in opposition to HB 2494 and 2495 (EXHIBIT G).

TAPE 88, A

010

Miller

Continues his testimony in opposition to HB 2494 and 2495.

074

Linda Eyerman

Attorney. Submits testimony and testifies in opposition to HB 2493 (EXHIBIT H). Believes that the system in place is working well.

235

Rep. Macpherson

Asks if HB 2493 and 2494 are passed will the cost for advocacy be increased or reduced.

248

Miller

States that it would increase them significantly.

267

Chair Williams

Closes the public hearing on HB 2492, 2493, 2494, 2495, 2496, 2497, 2498, and 2591. Adjourns the meeting at 3:20 p.m.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

A – HB 2492, 2493, 2494, 2495, 2498, and 2591, written testimony submitted by Gwen Dayton, 3 pgs.

B – HB 2492, 2494, 2497, written testimony submitted by Dr. Michael Bowen, 3 pgs.

C – HB 2492, 2494, 2497, written testimony submitted by Glenn Rodriguez, 3 pgs.

D – HB 2493, written testimony submitted by Jonathan Hoffman, 7 pgs., and an article on the admissibility of expert testimony, 9 pgs.

E – HB 2494, written testimony submitted by Jonathan Hoffman, 2 pgs.

F –HB 2494, written testimony submitted by Lawrence Wobbrock, 6 pgs.

G – HB 2494 and 2495, written testimony submitted by David Miller, 5 pgs.

H – HB 2493, written testimony submitted by Linda Eyerman, 3 pgs.