As a follow up to our most recent post on What You Need to Know About PA’s Child Protective Services Law, you should know that the Pennsylvania Superior Court (PA’s primary appellate court) recently held that a physician may be sued for malpractice for failing to report suspected child abuse, even though there is not an express right to sue … Continue Reading

The results of a comprehensive study published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) confirms that physicians’ fears of being sued for malpractice are not irrational. According to the article, “Malpractice Risk According to Physician Specialty”, most physician will be sued for malpractice at least once in their careers. Interestingly, however, only about 22% of malpractice cases … Continue Reading

According to a statement by Governor Edward G. Rendell as reported by the PR Newsire, malpractice reform in Pennsylvania has been a dramatic success.  Governor Rendell noted that malpractice filings statewide declined by 41% between 2002 and 2008. The Governor also noted that over the past three years, the two largest commercial medical malpractice insurers have either decreased their base … Continue Reading

According to a recent article in the Patriot News, Governor Rendell has outlined the costs associated with his plan to provide health insurance for Pennsylvania’s uninsured population.  The plan calls for increases in taxes on tobacco products and would tap into the MCARE fund to cover the health insurance costs.  However, according to Rendell, the plan would result in enough money to ultimately eliminate the MCARE … Continue Reading

Medtronic (and by default, all medical device manufacturers) scored a huge win on Wednesday when the U.S. Supreme Court held that medical device manufacturers cannot he held liable in tort actions for medical devices that have gone through FDA pre-market approval.  The case in question was brought by the estate of a man injured when a balloon catheter manufactured by … Continue Reading

Much to the chagrin of practicing Pennsylvania physicians, the issue of MCare premium subsidies became a political football earlier this month when Governor Ed Rendell said he would not approve the 2008 MCare subsidy until Pennsylvania lawmakers acted on his proposal to expand the state insurance program to uninsured adults.  The proposal calls for using a portion of the MCare surplus … Continue Reading

You may recall from a July 2 posting on this blog that the Insurance Department was considering changing the required level of malpractice coverage Pennsylvania physicians must maintain (before MCARE coverage) from $500,000 to $750,000.  Pennsylvania doctors can breath a sigh of relief, at least for now.  According to a July 20, 2007 Press Release, the Department has decided … Continue Reading

If certain changes currently under consideration by the Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner go into effect, Pennsylvania Physicians could end up paying a significantly larger malpractice insurance bill next year.  Specifically, the Insurance Department is considering changing the required level of coverage Pennsylvania physicians must maintain (before MCARE coverage) from $500,000 to $750,000.  According to a recent article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, … Continue Reading

According to a report released on May 24, 2007 by the American Association for Justice (AAJ) and the Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers, the medical malpractice insurance industry has been price-gouging doctors through excessive premiums.  The study, based based on annual reports from the top 15 medical malpractice insurers as rated by A.M. Best, suggests that premiums continue to skyrocket even though actual and projected losses … Continue Reading

The Pennsylvania Insurance Department published today the annual MCARE assessment to be levied for calendar year 2007.  The 2007 assessment will be 23% of the prevailing primary premium for each participating health care provider — 6% less than for calendar year 2006.  The MCARE statute defines ”prevailing primary premium” as the schedule of occurrence rates approved by the Insurance Commissioner for the … Continue Reading