Nev. Company Says No to Lowering Rates

August 16, 2002

A nonprofit company put together last spring by Nevada to offer medical malpractice insurance for physicians having difficulty obtaining affordable coverage has chosen not to lower rates, according to an Associated Press report.

The Medical Liability Association of Nevada board has decided against an immediate drop in rates due to uncertainties about whether the tort reform legislation passed by state lawmakers two weeks ago will hold up constitutionally.

The legislation, signed into law last week by Gov. Kenny Guinn, goes into effect Oct. 1. Lawmakers hope it will help trim major medical liability premiums and prevent doctors from leaving the state.

Medical liability insurance rates have jumped by as much as 300 percent in 2002 for high-risk specialties including obstetrics and neurosurgery.

Doctors point the finger of the increases at high-cost medical malpractice lawsuits, while lawyers say the problem is attributable to insurance industry mismanagement.

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