In a landmark case for Nevada, a jury awarded $500 million in punitive damages against Health Plan of Nevada for the 2008 hepatitis C outbreak. Add to that the $24 million awarded in compensatory damages in the same case, making the $524 million the largest in Nevada history. But, how will this change the way health providers do business in Nevada?
Francis McCabe, Court Reporter, Las Vegas Review Journal
Can Heath Plan of NV pass this fine on to customers in the form of higher rates and skimpier coverages? Or do they have the profits and reserves to cover this? Jackie –Apr 12, 2013 09:58:19 AM
From a corporate point of view, a fine is just another expense of doing business, and in that sense is no different than paying rent or salaries. So, the laws of economics demand that the fine *will* for the most part be passed on as price increases - directly or indirectly - because the profits are what attracts investors to invest in the company (and for that reason cannot be much reduced compared to market rates of return). And with HPN being a government-enabled pseudo-monopoly with a captive audience, the "customers" will be forced to simply pay the higher fees.Tom Hurst –Apr 12, 2013 23:25:46 PM