Medical Liability Monitor’s 2016 Annual Rate Survey Indicates Medical Malpractice Premiums Remain Flat Despite Tumult in Other Segments of the Healthcare Industry

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Since 1991, Medical Liability Monitor—an independent, medical professional liability industry newsletter—has been surveying the leading providers of medical malpractice insurance for its Annual Rate Survey report. With rates from more than 30 companies that represent as much as 75 percent of the physicians malpractice insurance market, it is the most comprehensive report on medical professional liability insurance premium rates available.

“The stability of medical malpractice premium rates is a stark contrast to the tumult occurring in other segments of the U.S. healthcare delivery system as a result of the reforms spurred by the Affordable Care Act.”

According to just-released data from the 2016 Medical Liability Monitor Annual Rate Survey, the medical malpractice insurance industry’s premiums remain essentially flat, experiencing only a very slight (0.1 percent) cumulative decrease from last year across the industry. For the vast majority (75 percent) of insurers in the survey, rates remained the same between 2015 and 2016, slightly higher than the percentage with no manual change shown between 2014 and 2015 (71 percent).

“The stability of medical malpractice premium rates is a stark contrast to the tumult occurring in other segments of the U.S. healthcare delivery system as a result of the reforms spurred by the Affordable Care Act,” said Michael Matray, editor of Medical Liability Monitor. “A full three quarters of the respondents to our Survey reported no rate changes in the last year, and just under 80 percent of respondents said they believe market is neither hardening or softening. Only 20 percent of respondents felt the market is getting softer, down from 43 percent who felt rates would continue to deflate last year.”

When reported medical malpractice insurance rates are broken down regionally, the Northeast and the Midwest are showing overall average rate increases, albeit very slight increases of 0.8 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively. The increase for the Northeast is driven by a significant increase in the Pennsylvania Patient Compensation Fund (PCF) surcharge, resulting in Pennsylvania rates increasing roughly 4 percent as well as a modest increase in Rhode Island. Decreases in Connecticut and Maine partially offset the increases in Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. The increase for the Midwest is also partially driven by increases to the PCF surcharges in Indiana and Nebraska. There was a modest increase for Illinois. The increases are almost offset by the slight decreases for Kansas and Michigan.

The South and West regions both show average decreases of less than 1 percent—0.7 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively. In the South, three states show slight average rate increases, while five states show decreases. Georgia, Kentucky and South Carolina reflect increases of 0.3 percent, 2.5 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively. Florida, Louisiana, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas reflect decreases of 3.7 percent, 6.7 percent, 3.1 percent, 1.3 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively. In the West, there are two states with overall average increases. California is showing an average manual rate increase of 2.4 percent, driven by an increase of just under 10 percent for one of the dominant writers in the state. There are implied average decreasing manual rates in four states in the West region—Arizona, Colorado, Idaho and Wyoming show decreases of 8.6 percent, 6.3 percent, 1.8 percent and 2.7 percent, respectively.

The Medical Liability Monitor Annual Rate Survey is the only source of its kind for benchmarking medical malpractice insurance premium rate data from year to year. This year’s Annual Rate Survey publishes premium rates effective July 1, 2016, breaking the data down state-by-state, county-by-county.

Complete Annual Rate Survey available to the press upon request.


Medical Liability Monitor is the only independent publication reporting exclusively on the medical professional liability insurance and risk management industries. The monthly newsletter, founded in 1975, has conducted the Annual Rate Survey since 1991. To order the Annual Rate Survey or to subscribe to the monthly newsletter, visit or call 312-944-7900.

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Mike Matray
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