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Vanderbilt University Law School

Statutory interpretation

1999

Medical Jurisprudence

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Erisa Preemption Of Medical Malpractice Claims In Managed Care: Asserting A New Statutory Interpretation, Karla S. Bartholomew May 1999

Erisa Preemption Of Medical Malpractice Claims In Managed Care: Asserting A New Statutory Interpretation, Karla S. Bartholomew

Vanderbilt Law Review

If Congress wants the American citizens to have access to adequate health care, then Congress must accept its responsibility to define the scope of ERISA preemption and to enact legislation that will ensure every patient has access to that care.' Congress enacted the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA) to protect employee interests and ensure a uniform body of law for pension and benefit plans. The statute's expansive preemption clause and preclusion of extra-contractual damages have since been used to immunize Managed Care Organizations ("MCOs") from liability for patients injuries resulting from medical malpractice. Because plaintiffs with preempted …