St. Louis Public Radio News
4:10 pm
Thu February 6, 2003

Holden Embraces Report on Medical Malpractice

Jefferson City, MO – Governor Holden is embracing a report
with proposals to slow the rising cost of medical malpractice insurance.

The report by the state Insurance Department mainly recommends changes to the insurance industry -- not the legal industry, as Republican lawmakers have proposed.

Insurance Director Scott Lakin says malpractice premiums have been rising partly because of a decline in competition among insurers.

His suggestions include the creation of a state-sponsored malpractice insurance program for medical specialties with the
fastest-rising insurance costs. That would require passage of legislation.

Lakin also proposes a law requiring insurers to use Missouri figures -- not national ones -- in setting their malpractice insurance premiums.