Insurer: Texas malpractice rates decreasing since liability reforms

Marilyn Tennissen Aug. 24, 2011, 8:42am


Due to medical liability reforms in the state, Texas physicians will pay less for liability coverage next year, according to the state's largest provider of malpractice insurance.

In a statement released today, the board of governors of the Texas Medical Liability Trust announced policyholders would receive an average rate decrease of almost 7 percent. In addition, renewing policyholders will receive an 18.5 percent dividend.

The combined rate reduction and dividend will save TMLT policyholders nearly $35.8 million in 2012 premium, according to the statement.

"Physicians work within an environment of decreasing reimbursements and increasing operating costs. We are hopeful that these reductions and dividends will help physicians as they help patients," said TMLT President and Chief Executive Officer Charles R. (Chip) Ott Jr.

TMLT states it has reduced rates for Texas physicians for nine consecutive years, "since the passage of medical liability reform by the Texas legislature and Gov. Rick Perry in 2003."

"Since the passage of medical liability reform, TMLT insured physicians will have saved $745.5 million in decreased premiums, once this latest round of rate cuts and dividends is implemented," the group announced.

In 2011, TMLT policyholders saw their premiums reduced by 54 percent from 2003 rates, according to the statement. TMLT expects the percentage reduction to reach almost 57 percent.

The rates and dividends will become effective Jan. 1.

TMLT is the state's largest medical liability insurance provider, serving more than 15,000 Texas Medical Association (TMA) member physicians.

The Trust was created and is endorsed by TMA and owned by its physician policyholders. TMLT is headquartered in Austin.
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