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'Health court' legislation introduced in Congress


WASHINGTON--Legislation that would provide federal funding for experimental "health courts" has been introduced in both houses of Congress.

Health courts would present alternatives to the litigation-based system of dealing with medical malpractice claims. The idea, which has been pushed by New York-based legal reform group Common Good, enjoys support from several medical professional associations.

The bipartisan legislation introduced Thursday would allow the Department of Health and Human Services to award up to 10 demonstration grants to states for the development, implementation and evaluation of alternatives--including special health courts--to the current tort litigation system for resolving disputes over medical injuries.