Medical Malpractice Reform Key to Reducing Healthcare Costs

Using tech-driven innovation to push for ground-up reform of broken medical malpractice insurance and improve patient-physician relationships

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Capson uses tech-driven innovation to push for ground-up reform of broken medical malpractice insurance; improve patient-physician relationships AUSTIN, TX, Feb. 23, 2011 — In response to soaring healthcare costs, President Barack Obama has proposed an overhaul of medical malpractice laws, including $250 million in grants to help states rewrite their existing malpractice laws. But while politicians attempt to sort out the complexities that plague medical malpractice, Capson Physicians Insurance Company (www.capson.com), a medical malpractice insurance company with investors including BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners, L.P. and Beazley Investments Ltd., is addressing the problem with a common sense approach and some much needed innovation. Of malpractice claims filed, 65 percent are ultimately dropped or dismissed. Regardless of the outcome, average defense costs per claim range from $22,000 to more than $100,000. “When a malpractice case goes to court, everyone loses,” said Capson COO Tom Cotten, former CEO and CFO of Texas Medical Liability Trust (TMLT), the largest writer of medical malpractice insurance in Texas. “Litigation can be ruinous; the emotional and financial costs are just too high for all parties involved. Patients and physicians deserve something better—that’s what we’ve created at Capson.” “Medical malpractice insurance today is fundamentally flawed, and Capson is addressing that,” said Capson founder Maury Magids, former president of the American Physicians Insurance Company (API). “It is our view that the most important issue to address is restoring the patient-physician relationship and simply letting patients be heard. We believe Capson can help physicians accomplish that and, in doing so, help reduce the likelihood of a malpractice suit from ever occurring.” Obama’s proposal includes provisions allowing doctors to apologize without admitting legal fault, a strategy proven to reduce litigation. Studies show that physicians with high patient satisfaction scores are less likely to be involved in malpractice lawsuits, but many physicians are unable to address their patients’ concerns because they are unaware of them and do not have a mechanism to collect their feedback. “We believe conflict can be prevented by letting your patient’s voice be heard—that’s why we created CapsonCareTM, a patient satisfaction app designed for iPad® and other mobile devices to gather a patient’s feedback in their doctor’s office immediately following their visit,” Magids said. “CapsonCare is a program provided to all our members, and facilitates an ongoing dialog between physicians and their patients, which we believe will lower insurance costs as a result of fewer claims being filed." “In a recent speech, President Obama talked about the need for innovation for the country’s future,” Magids said. “We believe medical malpractice is in desperate need of innovation and that a new standard of med mal protection is an essential part of meaningful medical malpractice reform that will benefit both patients and physicians.”