Now THIS is SCARY!!!

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Amy B, Mar 4, 2002.

  1. Amy B

    Amy B I miss my son so much
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    Did any of you catch the nightly ABC news tonight.
    They did a story on the cost of malpractice insurance. This is very scary!!!!
    Next week the trauma department in the Las Vegas hospital is expected to close.
    The chief said he has no doctors due to the rising cost of malpractice insurance that will
    now cost $156,000 per year. This is out of pocket cost for the doctors. It is due to a
    major insurer closing this week forever.

    They also profiled an OBGYN who has delivered 1000's of babies and is now quitting.
    His insurance has been increased this year from $40,000 to $202,000. He even showed
    the reporter his bill from the company.

    Does this freak anyone out? I am really worried about going through all this, just to find
    out that I can't afford to practice medicine. They showed some figures that were staggering.

    Any thoughts? :( <img border="0" title="" alt="[Frown]" src="frown.gif" />
     
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  3. synite

    synite Senior Member

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    i didnt catch the report, but DAMN! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="eek.gif" />

    you'd think we would have heard about this aspect of practicing medicine more often. are those numbers for real!?!
     
  4. Amy B

    Amy B I miss my son so much
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    I wrote down the numbers as they did the report. So unfortunetly they are right, at least according to the reporter. Plus the OBGYN showed the camera his bill statement. He hadn't been sued in the past, so it wasn't like they were raising his rates due to lawsuits against him. I am really, really, really nervous!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  5. none

    none 1K Member

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    There are always specialities out there with very low costs of insurance.
     
  6. brandonite

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    Move to Canada. No HMO's, and laws really restrict the range of lawsuits. :D Of course, you get paid in Canadian dollars, which really aren't worth a whole lot, but you make a decent living. :D A couple hundred thousand 80 cent dollars. <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" />

    Seriously, though. Those news stories will always find the very worst examples. If it's that serious a problem across the board, we would have heard much more about it by now.
     
  7. Papa Smurf

    Papa Smurf Thug 4 Life

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by brandonite:
    <strong>If it's that serious a problem across the board, we would have heard much more about it by now.</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">You'd be surprised how serious it is brandonite. All specialties are getting hit, some harder than others. You have to have minimum 250K coverage, which is like the lowest of the low, to practice in most places. It's pretty stupid to have that amount though, because one lawsuit and you're gone. One of my dad's colleagues just got taken to the cleaners for 500K of his OWN money after he got sued by one of his patients. I think he only had a 500K policy or something. Most 7 figure malpractice policies cost an arm and a leg as it is. My parent's malpractice rates just got jacked up 30%, and for what? Some twisted statistics? Whatever. It's just greedy insurance companies trying to bleed physicians dry. Even internists that don't do any procedures or anything invasive are getting hit hard. Someone needs to stop the bleeding so to speak. It's getting outta hand!
     
  8. Elysium

    Elysium Not Really An Old Beaver

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    My dad is an internist and he pays close to $3000 a month in malpractice insurance. He does no procedures.
    I very much want to be an OB/Gyn, but I know they have the highest malpractice insurance of all the specialities (I think). This is because you are liable for the babies you deliver until they're 18.
    If the law schools were a little more competitive (like all the sh!t we have to go through) maybe there wouldn't be quite so many bullsh!t lawsuits.

    But don't get me started.

    <img border="0" alt="[Pissy]" title="" src="graemlins/pissy.gif" />
     
  9. Street Philosopher

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    the LA TIMES covered this also... it was on the front page. You could probably find it on their site.
     
  10. brandonite

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    Well, I don't know a lot about the current situation in the US. I do have doctors in my extended family, and I have three friends with physician parents. And I know that they do pay a fair amount in insurance, but I also know they make a pretty good living. All of them make at least $150,000 before tax, which seems pretty reasonable to me... <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />

    I'm guessing the situation is pretty similar in the US. I know salaries are going down, but I still think that doctors make far more than a comfortable living.

    That doesn't mean that I don't think that the number of lawsuits going around isn't ridiculous, or that I think doctors make too much money. Just that we're far from a crisis situation, here... Am I wrong? Because if I am, then staying in Canada for med school just got a lot more attractive...
     
  11. mpp

    mpp SDN Moderator
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    <a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/la-000016310mar04.story" target="_blank">Here</a> is the link to the LA Times story.
     
  12. matthew0126

    matthew0126 Anaheim Angels

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    wow. in the story it says this isn't affecting california doctors...

    of all states, california with all its ridiculous pro-lawsuit laws is safe for doctors.... haha. cool. i suggest every1 move out of pennsylvania, arizona, oregon, nevada, and all those other states

    jk -- but there's nothing you can do until those states change their laws
     
  13. Epi

    Epi Fuzzy Tiger

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    Yeah, i heard that malpractice insurance for neurologists also is VERY high. hmm, i guess in some fields it will always be very high since some of the procedures involve a lot of work on the patients.

    I'm also sure that not all fields of medicine have to deal with those levels of insurance to pay.
     
  14. Dr. Dad

    Dr. Dad Senior Member

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    yeah as I understand it from my parents:
    Anesthesiology = highest malpractice costs
    OB/GYB = second highest
    Surgical specialties = third highest

    Its not only the lawyers that are out there. Its also the patients (ie: us) that are sue happy in today's society. I don't know how to fix it but I know this...as the pressure keeps getting higher and higher something is going to explode if we do not relieve it somehow.
     
  15. Freeeedom!

    Freeeedom! Senior Member

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    Physician Unionization!
     
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  17. nyskindr

    nyskindr Senior Member

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    In the past when malpractice premiums have reached a crisis point there has been reform too rectify the situation.In New York some years ago malpractice insurers faced bankruptcy. Laws were passed to regulate lawsuits and premiums.The result has been that although premiums are higher than most other stsates they have been quite stable for years.Now that other states will face lack of access they will have no choice but to reform their malpractice system.You cant keep cutting physicians income on one end to save money and raise their premiums on the other end.Its an economic formula that cant last for long.
     
  18. KyGrlDr2B

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    This is a huge problem in the state of WV. A lot of doctors are moving to nearby states to practice because it is so high here. Right now, they are trying to pass some sort of legislation to protect the doctors, because pretty soon this state isn't going to have any left.
     
  19. USeF

    USeF sunny L.A.

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Amy Beth:
    <strong>
    Does this freak anyone out? I am really worried about going through all this, just to find
    out that I can't afford to practice medicine. They showed some figures that were staggering.

    Any thoughts? :( :( </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Amy, this is why physicians, no third party representing us, need to get directly involved in health policy and legislation that affects all current and future physicians.
    *WARNING: cynical rant about the gov't loss of control ahead*
    Insurance companies and lawyers are running this friggin country, the govt comes second now. No longer can the govt. pass a bill and expect companies to submit. Not only will they be disobedient and continue, but will SUE the govt for lost revenue due to the regulation, and there's a good chance they'll WIN!! And if they don't win, they just move their factory overseas and still sell their product in the states. The problem with that is the govt. loses all the potential taxes dollars, so what do they do? They repeal the bill and the industry wins.. some real stinky ****e if you ask me <img border="0" title="" alt="[Frown]" src="frown.gif" />
     
  20. 8deuce

    8deuce Senior Member

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    USeF nailed it right on!!!

    you kind of stole my thunder because i was going to write a manifesto on how bloodsucking lawyers and insurances are bleeding us dry.

    lawyers..AAARRRGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!! :mad:
     
  21. COMP Bound

    COMP Bound Member

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    matthew0126 - you hit the nail on the head. That's exactly what is likely to occur. You're probably going to see a migration of doctors moving to all the states with better rate and cap lawsuit limits. But who loses out the most--THE PATIENTS!

    The U.S. really needs to get its act together--I mean the cards are stacked against the two groups that it should favor--the patients and the doctors!!!! I can't help but to believe that GREED has played a major role in the decline of healthcare in america--greedy lawyers, greedy HMO's :mad: :mad:

    Sorry guys, my soapbox just caved in under the weight of my passion <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  22. COMP Bound

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    matthew0126 - you hit the nail on the head. That's exactly what is likely to occur. You're probably going to see a migration og doctors moving to all the states with better rate and cap lawsuit limits. But who loses out the most--THE PATIENTS!

    The U.S. really needs to get its act together--I mean the cards are stacked against the two groups that it should favor--the patients and the doctors!!!! I can't help but to believe that GREED has played a major role in the decline of healthcare in america--greedy lawyers, greedy HMO's :mad: :mad:

    Sorry guys, my soapbox just caved in under the weight of my passion <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  23. Amy B

    Amy B I miss my son so much
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  24. DarksideAllstar

    DarksideAllstar you can pay me in bud

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    I am from Las Vegas, and let me tell you- Gov Guinn is as inept as they come. We have some of the lowest doctor/population ratios because they accept a mere 50 med students/year into the School of Medicine at the Univ of Nevada. Couple that with a huge influx of people moving into the Las Vegas area every year and all of a sudden you have a physician shortage. The apathy of our state legislature has created our physician crisis, and now the insurance companies are screwing us and forcing docs to leave. Hopefully they will create some laws similar to California's regarding malpractice insurance before there are even fewer physicians. :mad:
     
  25. flyfish

    flyfish Junior Member

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    I saw the report and it just made me more sure of becoming a Air Force Doc. No insurance needed and respectable living wage with housing and food included.
     
  26. Medic171

    Medic171 Senior Member

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    Darn, I guess my future salary may drop as low as 130,000 a year <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  27. Medic171

    Medic171 Senior Member

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    personally, I do not care. As long as my salary is triple digit, or even marginally below, it is ok with me, i will be quite comfortable.

    If you think the insurance costs too much, don't buy it. You don't HAVE to have it in private practice, but after 1 law suit I bet it would have nearly paid for itself.
     
  28. EpiII

    EpiII Senior Member

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    Let's not forget the GREEDY doctors in these lists as well. They aren't the reason for high insurance premiums, but they are a big reason why we went into managed care.

    The insurance premiums go up for all doctors of certain groups of specialties in geographic regions. You do not have to have had a suit filed against you to see your premiums increase, it could be your colleague down the road, etc. Maybe there is not enough competition for the physician's premium dollars. If there are only a couple of companies underwriting the policies, then they get to charge what they want.
     
  29. ItsGavinC

    Dentist Moderator Emeritus

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    Hi all. I'm usually found on the pre-dent forum, but I caught the ABC news story and just had to post a comment from my personal experience.

    Well, not my personal experience, but my father's. He is a practicing OB/GYN, and graduated from med school in the early 80s.

    In mid-late 80s he had a thriving practice where he had office hours for 40 hours a week and brought home roughly 350k.

    Now, due to HMOs, malpractice insurance, etc. (you guys know the story) he works a 55-60 hour office week (not counting hospital time) and brings home $135k.

    Granted, 135k is *not* small change -- that isn't the point of my post. The point is that in most every aspect, the glory days of medicine are gone and down the tubes. For those just entering the field it will be a shock, but it's *far* less disturbing than it is for those docs who have been around for 15-30 years. The workweek has been extended and salaries have been cut by up to 60%. What used to be 6 weeks of vacation a year has turned into 2 three-day weekends.

    Docs have got to love the $5 co-pay. You get to see a qualified medical provider for less change than a Wendy's combo meal. How much respect do you think the doctors get on the receiving end of that deal? None -- the patient wants the service fast, just like the combo meal.

    It's a sad state of affairs and steps need to be taken to remidy the process which is causing the medical field to sprial downward. Just a few thoughts.
     
  30. bomback

    bomback Senior Member

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    Well, if they keep this up, then some states will be left with a shortage of doctors and they'll have to some how amend the laws. You can't do without doctors! It just a shame that it might have to come down to this.
     
  31. Mystique

    Mystique The Procrastinator

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    These numbers are really surprising. I find them hard to swallow...

    My dad pays 5000 dollars a YEAR for malpractice insurance. He's in a VERY low-risk specialty. But then again, the costs of malpractice insurance depend on the state...perhaps AL is low among that list.
     
  32. Papa Smurf

    Papa Smurf Thug 4 Life

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Medic171:
    <strong>If you think the insurance costs too much, don't buy it. You don't HAVE to have it in private practice, but after 1 law suit I bet it would have nearly paid for itself.</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Not true. Sign any contract with any hospital for the privilege of admitting patients, and I can almost guarantee you that there will be a stipulation in there regarding medical malpractice coverage. This whole system blows.
     
  33. wolferman

    wolferman Member?

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    Maybe this is a secret way of creating more family practice physicians. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> By making it too expensive to practice anything else, they'll increase the number dramatically. It's kind of like the taxes put on cigarettes. By making a pack of cigarettes &gt;$6 per pack, eventually everyone will quit, or switch to something cheaper...like booze. <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" />
     

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