Survey: Access to obstetric care in Illinois continues decline

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted June 13, 2005

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The medical liability crisis in Illinois is causing obstetrician-gynecologists to give up high-risk procedures or move out of the state, according to a survey conducted by the Illinois Section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

More than 20% of obstetricians stopped practicing their specialty in 2004, according to the survey. Another 10% have announced they will quit by the end of this year, the survey reported.

The survey, which was sent to obstetric department chairs at 121 hospitals across the state, also found that 25% of ob-gyns who left Illinois now practice in other states, notably Wisconsin, Indiana and California.

A second survey, distributed among ob-gyn residency program directors across the state, found that only 24% of those residents who recently graduated stayed to work in Illinois.

"Not only are we losing doctors, but we're finding it increasingly difficult to recruit new ones or even keep those we train locally," said Denise Elser, MD, who chairs the Illinois Section of ACOG. "This does not bode well for the future of [obstetrical] care in Illinois."

Note: This item originally appeared at

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