The frequency and severity of medical malpractice claims increased dramatically in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In response to the malpractice crisis, many states enacted changes in tort law applicable to medical practitioners. This report presents some empirical evidence on the contribution of various factors to the diversity in the frequency and severity of claims across states and over time. Section II provides an overview of countrywide trends in claims for different lines of liability insurance and differences among states in malpractice litigation. Section III presents a theoretical model of the frequency and severity of medical malpractice claims. Section IV describes the data and methodological issues. Section V reports the empirical analysis of frequency of claims per capita, average severity per claim, and average claim cost per capita. Section VI analyzes the determinants of the post-1975 tort reforms. Section VII summarizes the findings and policy implications.
Danzon, Patricia Munch, The Frequency and Severity of Medical Malpractice Claims. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 1982. https://www.rand.org/pubs/reports/R2870.html.
Danzon, Patricia Munch, The Frequency and Severity of Medical Malpractice Claims, Santa Monica, Calif.: RAND Corporation, R-2870-ICJ/HCFA, 1982. As of January 13, 2022: https://www.rand.org/pubs/reports/R2870.html