Malpractice Claims Decrease in Monitored Physicians

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Malpractice Claims Decrease in Monitored Physicians

Research presented at the 2012 AMA/CMA/BMA International Conference on Physician Health in 2012 showed physicians who are monitored by a physician health program (PHP) reduce their risk of a paid malpractice claim to 20% below that of non-monitored physicians. Michael Gendel, MD, Medical Director Emeritus of the Colorado PHP, suggests that PHP participation not only leads to better health but also to increased safety.

He adds that “developing a relationship with all the people we monitor over time is a source of support and sometimes confrontation, but has a salutary effect. Even among the group simply with behavioral problems, they actually do change when they have a certain amount of accountability and they’re seen on a regular basis and asked about behavioral issues and stresses that precipitate these problems.” 1

“The study found that, although starting from a higher risk category, PHP participants ended up decreasing their risk to 20% below that of the non-PHP group after monitoring. So in monetary terms, from the insurer’s perspective, for every dollar spent by the malpractice insurer, the PHP physicians required about 20% less that their peers.” 2


1 Kate Johnson, “Malpractice Claims Decline Among Docs in Monitoring Program”,, Nov 1, 2012.

2 Ibid.