Articles  |   March 2019
Professional Liability Trends 2018: While Premiums Continue Their Downward Trend, Policy Limits Take a Different Course
Author Affiliations
  • Christopher M. Burkle, M.D., J.D.
    Chair, Committee on Professional Liability
Article Information
Ethics / Medicolegal Issues / Pain Medicine / Patient Safety / Articles
Articles   |   March 2019
Professional Liability Trends 2018: While Premiums Continue Their Downward Trend, Policy Limits Take a Different Course
ASA Monitor 3 2019, Vol.83, 24-26.
ASA Monitor 3 2019, Vol.83, 24-26.
Each year the ASA Committee on Professional Liability provides a report on changing trends in malpractice insurance premiums and characteristics impacting physician anesthesiologists. The Anesthesia Closed Claims Project conducted a survey of malpractice insurers in May-July 2018 on behalf of the committee. Twenty-six medical liability insurance companies providing coverage to more than 19,600 anesthesiologists practicing in the U.S. responded to query.
Consistent with the committee’s more recent reports, insurance companies conveyed that in 2018 most anesthesiologists carried policy limits of $1 million per occurrence and $3 million per year.1  However, there appeared to be a trend toward increased amounts of coverage seen in this year’s survey. In 2018, 69 percent of companies reported that their most common policy had limits of $1 million/$3 million (compared to 78 percent in 2017), 27 percent reported that their most common policies had higher limits (compared to 19 percent in 2017) and 4 percent (n=1 company, similar to 2017 reporting) had lower policy limits ($100,000/$300,000).
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