2013 Medical Professional Liability Insurance Report

Medical Professional Liability Insurance Report Summary

The Missouri Department of Insurance has collected medical professional liability insurance claims data for more than 30 years. These data provide an extensive time series regarding claim trends in Missouri. Data through 2013 indicate that the Missouri medical professional liability insurance market remains robust and competitive, and claims remain at levels well below historical averages. Among the most notable trends are:

  • After a significant increase in 2007, the number of claimants with closed claims declined substantially in each subsequent year. Between 2007 and 2013, the number of claims closed declined by nearly one-third, from 1,278 to 873. The number of claims closed with payment also declined from 581 to 379 over the same period.
  • The number of newly reported malpractice actions declined to the lowest level observed over the time period of the report. New claims peaked at 1,513 in 2005, but by 2013 had declined to 754.
  • The average recovery per claimant (from all parties) declined in 2013 to $275,808. 
  • The number of individuals with pending claims, or claims open at year-end, reached an all-time low of 1,874 in 2013, after a 2005 peak of 3,044. 
  • Across all categories, four types of allegations accounted for more than 81 percent of all cases.  Surgical errors were the most prevalent type of allegation, and were associated with nearly one-third of claims. Other common allegations involved diagnosis (17.9 percent), non-surgical and non-medicine related treatments (18 percent), and patient safety issues unrelated to medical treatment, such as falls, injury during transport, assaults by third parties, or privacy and ethical allegations (13.8 percent). Additional detailed tables are provided in the report.
  • Average payments track very closely the severity of the injury. Several classes of injury resulted in average payment exceeding $1 million. They included injuries resulting in quadriplegia (with an average payment of just over $1.8 million), contraction of meningitis ($1.6 million), cerebral palsy ($1.6 million), and paraplegia ($1.1 million).  

Medical Professional Liability Insurance Reports

2013 report

2012 report

2011 report

2010 report

2009 report

2008 report

2007 report

2006 report

2005 report

2004 report

2003 report