Medical Malpractice Statistics You Should Know

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Medical Malpractice Statistics You Should Know

In the year 2012, there was $3.6 billion in payouts for medical malpractice. That makes for 12, 142 total payouts, or one every 43 minutes. From 1998 to 2001, total medical malpractice payouts increased by 46 percent, but there has been a steady decline since 2003. In 2012, total payouts were 3.4 percent lower than in 2011. Additionally, the bulk of payments made came from settlements, which accounted for 93 percent of all payouts. Only 5 percent of payouts were made from judgements. The following are some more notable findings from the 2013 Medical Malpractice Payout Analysis, done by Diederich Healthcare.

Five states account for 48 percent of all payouts

• New York: $763,088,250

•  Pennsylvania: $316,167,500

• California: $222,926,200

• New Jersey: $206,668,250

• Florida: $203,671,100

 

Payouts by patient type

• Inpatient: 45 percent

• Outpatient: 41 percent

• Both: 9 percent

 

43 percent of all payouts were made to male patients

• 16 percent – ages 0-19

• 17 percent – ages 20-39

• 39 percent – ages 40-59

• 23 percent – ages 60-79

• 3 percent – ages 80+

 

57 percent of all payouts were made to female patients

• 7 percent – ages 0-19

• 27 percent – ages 20-39

• 39 percent – ages 40-59

• 19 percent – ages 60-79

• 4 percent – ages 80+

 

Severity of alleged injury in medical malpractice claims

• Death: 31 percent

• Significant permanent injury: 19 percent

• Major permanent injury: 18 percent

• Quadriplegic, brain damage, lifelong care: 12 percent

• Minor permanent injury: 8 percent

• Major temporary injury: 7 percent• Major temporary injury: 7 percent

• Minor temporary injury: 3 percent

• Emotional injury only: 1 percent

• Insignificant injury: 0.4 percent

 

Types of allegations medical malpractice claims

• Related to diagnosis: 33 percent

• Related to surgery: 24 percent

• Related to treatment: 18 percent

• Related to obstetrics: 11 percent

• Related to medication: 4 percent

• Related to monitoring: 3 percent

• Related to anesthesia: 3 percent

• Other: 4 percent

Failure to diagnose accounted for 20 percent of all payouts. Diagnosis related allegations had the largest  percentage of payouts: a total of $1,176,345,550.

Also of note, a study by the New England journal of medicine found that most physicians will be sued for malpractice at least once before the age of 65. The incidence of medical malpractice lawsuits increases based on the risk involved with a physician’s speciality. For example, by age 65, 75 percent of “low-risk” specialties, such as pediatrics and family medicine, will be sued. Conversely, in the same time frame, 99 percent of of “high-risk” specialties, such as surgery, will be sued. According to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, pediatricians and psychiatrists are the least likely to be sued; less than 30 percent have been sued, less than 10 percent sued twice.

If you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, contact a Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice attorney at Wolf & Pravato. We can help you fight for the justice the law afford you.

Call Wolf & Pravato at 1-954-633-8270 or fill out our online contact form.

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