Doctors' malpractice insurance costs!!!!

  1. I wanted to post this article here to spark some thought and discussion about the subject matter. If some of your feel this forum isn't a good place for this kind of topic (since so many here are not even in CRNA school yet), please let me know and I can avoid this in the future.

    http://www.usatoday.com/money/econom...OE=click-refer

    I read this article and was amazed! There are things I disagree with MDA/DOAs over, but this is something I can agree 100% on. Medical malpractice insurance is an absolute CRIME! Talk about the "...need for tort reform...." This is outrageous!

    I appreciate so much about Tenesma and his/her comments (;-)) on this board. I would hope s/he will continue to return here as his/her presence and insight are invalueable to this small forum. We can all learn a lot from him/her and I would hope we can continue to enjoy the input s/he brings! When I think about some of our differences, I also want to contemplate some of the things we share and this is no doubt one of them.

    As CRNAs and future CRNAs you should be concerned about the state of malpractice insurance. Both MDAs and CRNAs are paying rates that only continue to rise. What is really frightening is that many policies are written more for the insurance company's benefit than the anesthesia provider.

    Some companies have written policies that allow them (the insurance company) to settle a lawsuit (often frivolous) out of court if they believe it will save them money in the long run! The end result? The MDA/CRNA has a "settlement" on their tract record (even though it may have been totally bogus!) and now they may have a difficult time trying to find malpractice insurance and may even have trouble maintaining/obtaining priviledges to practice = thus, possibly threatening their ability to make a living! ...and all for what? Someone is distressed at the loss of a loved one (who may have died due to no fault of the surgeon, anesthesia provider, hospital, etc.) and now wants to $ue!? Sad!

    When you have more and more lawsuits like this "settled" just to "make it go away" (and thereby encouraging others to follow suit over the long term), you are creating a monster that will not be easily destroyed. This is the state we are in today.

    One of my friends is a surgeon and is one of the most "wonderful individuals" I have had the priviledge to be friends with. She is "gifted" and highly intelligent and such an incredible individual - I just think the world of her! She recently was telling me a little about her practice and how it isn't worth it to go to medical school and practice as a surgeon anymore. She literally says during surgery, "DON'T let your kids/friends/loved ones go to medical school - it doesn't pay anything!" That is a terrible indictment on the state of affairs in practicing medicine as a surgeon today! That is just sad.

    There are plenty of fascets to talk about from reading this article, and I'd love to read some of your thoughts reacting to it. I read elsewhere recently where a top neuro-surgeon on the east coast is making about $47k a year after paying all of his business expenses, employess, and malpractice insurance! There's something wrong with this folks.

    I am already thinking about options for myself - like either "going commando" (tisk tisk - w/o insurance) or perhaps CRNAs need to start their own "ri$k-pool of $$$ and just take our chances. Of course not all states and hospitals want to grant priviledges without proof of insurance. Lots to think about here folks!

    Sleeepy
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   JimmyMallo
    I totally agree with you about malpractice insurance!! I have actually seen patients families bring in lawyers to review records and talk to staff BEFORE the family member passes! These are people that came to the hospital knowing that they would probably die and the family is seeing $$$$$!! However, I also read about that POOR neurosurgeon making $47k/yr and it is BS! True malpractice is OUTRAGEOUS, but that $47k is his takehome pay after taxes and writeoffs! That is what was left after every thing he bought the entire year was written off as a business expense, hell he probably deducted the cost of the tax accountant from that as well I know several neurosurgeons around this area and they all pay outrageous premiums but the make WAY over 100k minimum after insurance. BTW, the article said 47k after taxes which means his taxable income was probably closer to 75k even after all of his write offs! No doctor will ever go broke in the USA, but they do seem to have to bill for hundreds of thousands of dollars just to get paid a little less than they are worth.

    PS if there are any surgeons out there I mean no offense, I truly respect surgeons and the jobs they do, it's just that I found the way the paper overstated this to be amusing.


    Quote from u-r-sleeepy
    I wanted to post this article here to spark some thought and discussion about the subject matter. If some of your feel this forum isn't a good place for this kind of topic (since so many here are not even in CRNA school yet), please let me know and I can avoid this in the future.

    http://www.usatoday.com/money/econom...OE=click-refer

    I read this article and was amazed! There are things I disagree with MDA/DOAs over, but this is something I can agree 100% on. Medical malpractice insurance is an absolute CRIME! Talk about the "...need for tort reform...." This is outrageous!

    I appreciate so much about Tenesma and his/her comments (;-)) on this board. I would hope s/he will continue to return here as his/her presence and insight are invalueable to this small forum. We can all learn a lot from him/her and I would hope we can continue to enjoy the input s/he brings! When I think about some of our differences, I also want to contemplate some of the things we share and this is no doubt one of them.

    As CRNAs and future CRNAs you should be concerned about the state of malpractice insurance. Both MDAs and CRNAs are paying rates that only continue to rise. What is really frightening is that many policies are written more for the insurance company's benefit than the anesthesia provider.

    Some companies have written policies that allow them (the insurance company) to settle a lawsuit (often frivolous) out of court if they believe it will save them money in the long run! The end result? The MDA/CRNA has a "settlement" on their tract record (even though it may have been totally bogus!) and now they may have a difficult time trying to find malpractice insurance and may even have trouble maintaining/obtaining priviledges to practice = thus, possibly threatening their ability to make a living! ...and all for what? Someone is distressed at the loss of a loved one (who may have died due to no fault of the surgeon, anesthesia provider, hospital, etc.) and now wants to $ue!? Sad!

    When you have more and more lawsuits like this "settled" just to "make it go away" (and thereby encouraging others to follow suit over the long term), you are creating a monster that will not be easily destroyed. This is the state we are in today.

    One of my friends is a surgeon and is one of the most "wonderful individuals" I have had the priviledge to be friends with. She is "gifted" and highly intelligent and such an incredible individual - I just think the world of her! She recently was telling me a little about her practice and how it isn't worth it to go to medical school and practice as a surgeon anymore. She literally says during surgery, "DON'T let your kids/friends/loved ones go to medical school - it doesn't pay anything!" That is a terrible indictment on the state of affairs in practicing medicine as a surgeon today! That is just sad.

    There are plenty of fascets to talk about from reading this article, and I'd love to read some of your thoughts reacting to it. I read elsewhere recently where a top neuro-surgeon on the east coast is making about $47k a year after paying all of his business expenses, employess, and malpractice insurance! There's something wrong with this folks.

    I am already thinking about options for myself - like either "going commando" (tisk tisk - w/o insurance) or perhaps CRNAs need to start their own "ri$k-pool of $$$ and just take our chances. Of course not all states and hospitals want to grant priviledges without proof of insurance. Lots to think about here folks!

    Sleeepy
  4. by   gwenith
    We started to have a problem here in Australia and the goverement started to act to put the brakes on some of the more outlandish settlements but it still needs a lot of work.

    Many years ago NURSES here in Australia could not get malpractice insurance - because the insurance industry was arguing that 1) we were covered by vicarious liability and 2) if we had high cover we would attract more litigation

    What we did was have the union/federation provide our insurance. Now when I pay my annual union/federation payments I am automatically covered. This has distinct advantages as we do not have to go hunting a worker's comp lawyer or an employment lawyer we simply contact the union. They do our negotiation for us. We are in a much stronger position for this.
  5. by   traumaRUs
    Illinois is one of the states w/o a malpractice suit award cap. So...as a result our neurosurgeons pay the most of any MDs in the US. So...we don't have any - there are only a handful now in the entire state. Having a neurosurgeon inhouse is usually the deciding factor for level one vs level two trauma center designation. (Sorry if I posted about other than CRNA but this is an issue close to my heart)>)
  6. by   u-r-sleeepy
    Quote from JimmyMallo
    I totally agree with you about malpractice insurance!! I have actually seen patients families bring in lawyers to review records and talk to staff BEFORE the family member passes! These are people that came to the hospital knowing that they would probably die and the family is seeing $$$$$!! However, I also read about that POOR neurosurgeon making $47k/yr and it is BS! True malpractice is OUTRAGEOUS, but that $47k is his takehome pay after taxes and writeoffs! That is what was left after every thing he bought the entire year was written off as a business expense, hell he probably deducted the cost of the tax accountant from that as well I know several neurosurgeons around this area and they all pay outrageous premiums but the make WAY over 100k minimum after insurance. BTW, the article said 47k after taxes which means his taxable income was probably closer to 75k even after all of his write offs! No doctor will ever go broke in the USA, but they do seem to have to bill for hundreds of thousands of dollars just to get paid a little less than they are worth.

    PS if there are any surgeons out there I mean no offense, I truly respect surgeons and the jobs they do, it's just that I found the way the paper overstated this to be amusing.
    Thanks for your reply. Still, don't you think it is pathetic and tragic that a neurosurgeon would "take home" $47k after a year of service? That should be a CRIME in America!!!!! I hope he did write off everything under the sun including a part of his house expenses for a home office. That still doesn't justify him making such a small amount after 14 years (or more?) in school post high school!

    I was talking with one of my surgeon friends recently who LOST MONEY last year due to a pregnancy which required her to take some extra time off (was a little more than the 6 weeks some of us want to take). She let me know a surgeon in our area billed over $1 million in fees last year that s/he received about $40k for after all was said and done... and some people think that's "OK"?!? How are we supposed to attract and keep skilled people like this? That is SICK!

    Another article I liked was where many surgeons are starting to refuse to treat lawyers - that is just TOO FUNNY!!!!! "Someboday STOP ME!!!" - I'm about to get started on my lawyer jokes...!

    Sleeepy
  7. by   JimmyMallo
    I read that lawyer article too That is great!! I'd love to see a line of malpractice lawers waiting for service at a county clinic :hatparty:



    Quote from u-r-sleeepy
    Thanks for your reply. Still, don't you think it is pathetic and tragic that a neurosurgeon would "take home" $47k after a year of service? That should be a CRIME in America!!!!! I hope he did write off everything under the sun including a part of his house expenses for a home office. That still doesn't justify him making such a small amount after 14 years (or more?) in school post high school!

    I was talking with one of my surgeon friends recently who LOST MONEY last year due to a pregnancy which required her to take some extra time off (was a little more than the 6 weeks some of us want to take). She let me know a surgeon in our area billed over $1 million in fees last year that s/he received about $40k for after all was said and done... and some people think that's "OK"?!? How are we supposed to attract and keep skilled people like this? That is SICK!

    Another article I liked was where many surgeons are starting to refuse to treat lawyers - that is just TOO FUNNY!!!!! "Someboday STOP ME!!!" - I'm about to get started on my lawyer jokes...!

    Sleeepy

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