Managed Care


Malpractice premiums constitute small component of expenses

MANAGED CARE September 2006. © MediMedia USA
Compensation Monitor

Malpractice premiums constitute small component of expenses

MANAGED CARE September 2006. ©MediMedia USA

Few issues galvanize the medical community like the cost of malpractice insurance, but a recent survey shows that the increases are less severe than many physician advocacy groups suggest. A study published in Health Affairs reports that surveys of self-employed physicians from 1970 to 2000 indicate that premiums rose until 1986, declined until 1996, then rose again, but were actually lower in 2000 than in 1986. In 1970, premiums constituted 6 percent of total expenses, rose to 11 percent in 1986, but by 1996, were back down to 6 percent of total expenses. So where are physicians feeling the pinch?

From 1970 to 1986, total practice expenses increased an average of $4,330. Office expenses increased 27 percent, and nonphysician personnel expenses increased 36 percent. This report suggests that malpractice premiums have consistently been a small percentage of total expenses.

Total expenses rising, but not because of malpractice premiums

Source: Rodwin MA, et al. Malpractice premiums and physicians' income: Perceptions of a crisis conflict with empirical evidence. Health Affairs. 2006;24(3)750–758.


2014 Annual HEDIS® and Star Ratings Symposium Nashville, TN November 3–4, 2014
PCMH & Shared Savings ACO Leadership Summit Nashville, TN November 3–4, 2014
Medicare Risk Adjustment, Revenue Management, & Star Ratings Fort Lauderdale, FL November 12–14, 2014
World Orphan Drug Congress Europe 2014 Brussels, Belgium November 12–14, 2014
Healthcare Chief Medical Officer Forum Alexandria, VA November 13–14, 2014
Home Care Leadership Summit Atlanta, GA November 17–18, 2014
6th Semi-Annual Diagnostic Coverage and Reimbursement Conference Boston December 4–5, 2014
Customer Analytics & Engagement in Health Insurance Chicago December 4–5, 2014
Pharmaceutical and Biotech Clinical Quality Assurance Conference Alexandria, VA December 4–5, 2014
9th Semi-Annual Medical Device Coverage and Reimbursement Conference San Diego December 5, 2014
8th Annual Medical Device Clinical Trials Conference Chicago December 8–9, 2014
HealthIMPACT Southeast Tampa, FL January 23, 2015