Report From the States
New Jersey "Malpractice" Premiums Up 250 Percent
"Doctors in such states as Mississippi and Texas are either quitting or fleeing to practice medicine elsewhere because of out-of-sight jury awards in malpractice cases. They soon may be joined by New Jersey physicians.
"Earlier this month, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists named New Jersey one of the nine 'red alert' states where lack of tort reform is endangering health care.
· New Jersey's largest malpractice insurer, the MIIX group, announced it has essentially decided to fold up shop.
· Founded by doctors to insure themselves and other doctors, MIIX has lost more than $200 million in the past 15 months --- and their decision means that about 9000 New Jersey doctors, 37 percent of the state total, may soon lose their insurance.
· Additionally, three malpractice insurers stopped doing business in the state in 2001.
· Thanks to skyrocketing jury awards, New Jersey hospitals have seen malpractice insurance premiums jump 250 percent over the past three years."
Editorial: "Born to sue," Wall Street Journal, May 17, 2002. For more on health care regulations and medical liability, see http://www.ncpa.org/iss/hea.
Originally published in the Medical Sentinel 2002;7(3):101. Copyright©2002
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS)