Insights about Medical Malpractice in America

Medical malpractice devastates individuals and exposes weaknesses in health care systems and processes. Leaders who understand how to leverage medical professional liability (MPL) data can help their organizations prevent similar injuries of harm and loss. In Candello’ annual report,  Medical Malpractice in America: A 10-year Assessment with Insights, we examined national trends in claims frequency, payment, and root causes of preventable harm.

Key findings:

  • a 27% drop in the frequency of malpractice claims and suits being asserted per physician
  • the risk of having a claim or suit filed against obstetricians/gynecologists has dropped 44%
  • average case management expenses increased on average 3.5% annually, reaching $46,000 per case in 2016, outpacing both consumer and legal inflation indices
  • the volume of high-indemnity payments of ($3M–11M) increased 7% annually
  • a medical malpractice case challenging a clinician’s judgment is 2.8 times more likely to close with payment than a case without clinical judgment issues

Download Candello Report

Each medical malpractice case presents unique circumstances, but a collection of similar cases can reveal a common story of what goes wrong. The 124,000 MPL claims and suits analyzed for this Report represent more than $20B in reserves and losses, and were drawn from Candello—a database of deeply coded medical malpractice claims with more than 450,000 cases. Candello reflects the medical professional liability experience of more than 550 hospitals and health care entities and 180,000 physicians from commercial and captive insurers nationwide, representing approximately 30 percent of all US medical malpractice claims and suits.

Analysis of Candello data provides credible findings that can help improve safety and reduce MPL exposure. Candello is different than other MPL datasets in that Candello data includes paid and unpaid claims and it includes contributing factors that codify issues that have statistically significant impact on case resolution. This enables organizations to get at the root cause level of error and factors that drive indemnity payments.

In this video, Michael Paskavitz, Vice President of Candello, shares three reasons why health care leaders should read this report:

  1. Provides a holistic view of the medical malpractice industry, with insights about financial,  insurance, and clinical trends
  2. Demonstrates the depth of learning that can come from aggregate, deeply coded medical malpractice claims
  3. Volume of claims and credibility of data help identify when a trend is actually a trend, so you can make data-informed decisions
Written By
Katy Schuler, MSc
Katy Schuler was the Marketing Manager for CRICO Strategies.
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