The costs of medical practice impact at every level of medical care. Individual victims suffer a reduction in longevity or quality of life by misdiagnosis; health care facilities increase budgets to operate; consumers pay higher premiums and other associated costs. The aggregate increase in medical malpractice cases nationwide has prompted discussion about how to reduce the financial and clinical impact.
Increased number of claims continues the cycle
Medical malpractice claims have grown steadily over the past decade. Claim payouts directly and immediately impact the cost of medication and services. Fewer employers offer health insurance to individuals and families, thereby reducing access to healthcare services. Despite that medical malpractice remains the third most common cause of death nationwide, some perceive many medical malpractice cases as frivolous in basis or excessive in awards and recommend stricter regulations.
At least for calendar year 2022, participating health care providers and entities in Pennsylvania will pay a reduced fee of 12% to the Medical Care Availability and Reduction of Error Fund (MCARE) compared to the rate of 19% last year. The fee pays claims against providers for losses and damages awarded in medical professional liability actions in excess of their basic insurance coverage.
The full picture
Economic, medical, and social factors contribute the number of people who choose to pursue a career as a physician. Understaffed facilities increase the possibility of a hasty diagnosis or other mistake. Attorneys who know the legal process and understand medical trends can provide answers to medical malpractice questions.