Cost of liability claims keeps rising

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Feb. 16, 2004

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Physician and hospital liability insurance premiums will continue to increase in 2004 because the average cost per claim continues to rise, according to a study from Aon Risk Services.

Based on the study's look at 3,000 physician liability claims and more than 38,000 hospital liability claims, Aon predicts that the claim rate will rise by 9.7% this year. The average physician liability claim is expected to be $178,000 in 2004.

"This study speaks to the underlying frequency and severity trends that are driving these premiums," said Greg Larcher, assistant director and actuary for Aon Actuarial and Analytics Practice. "The results of this study show that claims activity is a significant contributor to the recent increases in market premiums."

The fourth annual study, "Hospital Professional Liability and Physician Liability Benchmark Study," is touted as the largest of its kind. In the previous three years, the study found that claim costs had grown at about 10% annually.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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