Trends in Medicine and how they effect medical malpractice insurance premiums

March 01, 2012

The Doctors Insurance Agency continues to work hard to find all specialties the lowest premium possible with The Doctors Company. The trend shows that rates are increasing in many states, even if not yet California. There are many who believe that we are at the absolute lowest level that any Carrier can manage. Attorney's Fees continue to increase, the number of claims per year is increasing, and there is only one way they can go!

The bottoming of rates will push carriers to start offering a wider variety of credits in order to keep the least risky policyholders. Reserve funds will likely be tapped and endorsements used to hold rates down through this year. The Doctors' Insurance Agency, representing The Doctors' Company can help you and your medical group aligns with the organization which will provide you with these medical malpractice insurance discounts. Almost all carriers are heavily discounting to retain their good doctors and attract new business. The physicians with a few claims or disciplinary problems will see their premiums rise, or even policies cancelled. The Excess Surplus Lines' Insurance Companies will pick up these less than clean physicians.

New to practice Discounts should be negotiated; spread over three years, Allied Healthcare providers should be priced competitively as these are methods of cheaply acquiring new business for medical malpractice Carriers. Facilities should shop their coverage as well. Groups and Facilities can be discounted by 25% in this competitive time. Surgery Centers, Outpatient Clinics, Urgent Care Clinics and Emergency Medicine are all specialties and markets which can design creative malpractice insurance programs to reduce premiums. Additionally, these insured risks can be designed to provide tail so that it is easier for them to recruit new physicians. The Doctors Company has competitive programs for Podiatry and Oral Maxillofacial Surgery and Chiropractors, again showing that they are interested in insuring the entire group, including all healthcare providers. An example of Allied Healthcare Providers increasing to provide medical services, Chiropractors increased by 46% from 2010 to 2011.

Doctor Visits have fallen by 17 percent since 2009 for patients younger than 65 as patients rely more and more heavily on online sources and alternative medical treatment. More patients are taking specialized treatment pathways and options rather than primary Care choices. This trend is supported by the statistic that while doctor visits have declined by 17%, the total number of insured patients has dipped by only 2%. To save cost, the average patient goes online first and to the doctor second. Complicating the medical service industry’s problem is that a mass retirement of physicians is coming while patients are at the same time self directing to specialty care. In this scenario, allied healthcare providers are going to be in demand.