Government Accountability in Healthcare - Who would you sue if denied care?


Before dawn on March 16, 1975, two men broke down the back door of a three-story home in Washington, D.C. shared by three women. Upon the first call to police, officers arrived at the house, got no answer to their knocks on the door, did a quick check around, and left. When the women frantically called the police a second time, no officers were even dispatched.

The attackers kidnapped, robbed, raped, and beat all three women over 14 hours. When these women later sued the city and its police for negligently failing to protect them or even to answer their second call, the court held that GOVERNMENT HAD NO DUTY to respond to their call or to protect them. (See below for case references and citations)

This case is not unique, every year in the US, hundreds of civil suits are denied, dismissed, or overturned based on Stare Decisis that the government has "no affirmative duty" to protect citizens.

This is due to the fact that the US Constitution does not explicitly state that protection as a Right JUST LIKE it does not name healthcare as a Right. This COMPLETELY applies to healthcare, because the same courts and same judges will handle healthcare claims citing Stare Decisis regarding government services.


1) Under a single-payer system, or even under a Government subsidized plan, when your claim is mishandled, wronfully denied, or ignored, how would you ever sue for compensation if it was needed?

2) Knowing this, do you still trust the government to be as accountable as private industry, who you almost certainly would be denied the right to sue?

3) Mhy is NO ONE asking these questions in this healthcare debate???????

These questions aren't about lawsuits or money, they are merely about accountability.

Referenced Case Law:

South v. Maryland, 59 U.S. 396, 15 L.Ed.433 (1856) (the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that local law-enforcement had no duty to protect individuals, but only a general duty to enforce the laws.)

DeShaney v. Winnebago County Department of Social Services, 489 U.S. 189, 109 S.Ct. 998, 1989 (1989)

Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97

Youngberg v. Romeo, 457 U.S. 307

Bowers v. Devito, 686 F.2d 616 (7th Cir. 1982)

Warren v. District of Columbia (444 A.2d 1, 1981)

Hartzler v. City of San Jose, 46 Cal.App.3d 6, 120 Cal.Rptr. 5 (1975)

Davidson v. City of Westminister, 32 Cal.3d 197, 185 Cal.Rptr. 252 (1982)

Westbrooks v. State, 173 Cal.App.3d 1203, 219 Cal.Rtr. 674 (1985)

Ne Casek v. City of Los Angeles, 233 Cal.App.2d 131, 43 Cal.Rptr. 294 (1965)

Susman v. City of Los Angeles, et al., 269 Cal.App.2d 803, 75 Cal.Rptr. 240 (1969)

Antique Arts Corp. v. City of Torrence, 39 Cal.App.3d 588, 114 Cal.Rptr. 332 (1974)

5 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    In the situation of a single payer system, that system is sued.

    Not that the USA is getting a single payer system.

    So in the UK, which has a single payer system, if there is a system failure in a health provider, they can be sued. If it is down to the actions of a single clinician, that clinician can be sued.

    But as noted, the reforms are not about giving the US a single payer system.

    Why does no other developed nation have the US model of healthcare? Because in the US model, insurance companies use death panels to deny care to those they are meant to cover. And then they raise costs [1]. Not only does the USA spend more on healthcare than any other nation [2], it finds itself bottom of the table when it comes to preventable deaths due to treatable conditions when it comes to developed nations [3]. The sad thing is that rather than focus on these things, the right spreads lies and half truths about the reforms and how healthcare works abroad [4]. But, if you think that my points are wrong, e-mail me with proof.

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  • mckean
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    Death panels exists. They're simply no longer executive run. Your coverage organizations are making that resolution. Get it directly. And it is reform no longer coverage. Meant to ensure that does not occur. That's the preexisting situation aspect. Among others. The public choice BTW isn't executive run however a POOL of the uninsured. So once more why are Conservatives clouding that foremost FACT? But the ones men additionally scoffed at vitamin and endeavor despite the fact that ALL medical professionals agree weight problems is a obstacle and SO so much wellbeing care cash will also be stored with functional vitamin and endeavor. Talk approximately denial!

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  • 1 decade ago

    Sadly, you'll probably not get many answers to this as there are no talking points on it from politicians. I think you are right about this though. And I also foresee lawsuits against doctors and hospitals going drastically up. And with no tort reform of any type that will drive up costs. It's going to be interesting to say the least if they pass this.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The further up the food chain of govt one moves the more 'bullet proof' the defendants are ( as in trying to get 0bama to show the real birth certificate $1.7 million paid out on that alone) so yeah, trying to sue the feds because gramps was turned down on that heart repair work (he's too old, you see, to make it worthwhile for the operation, it would be much more 'efficient' for us to do that for someone younger) or your wife's appendectomy got botched and she died of 'complications', will be flat out impossible.

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  • 1 decade ago

    You wouldn't be able to. And I agree, it is very sad that no one asks these questions in regard to the healthcare debate.

    Source(s): Writing a paper on the privatization of police.
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