Photo of a stethoscope on a medical chart.

Medical Malpractice Catastrophic Injury Trends

Medical malpractice can be life-altering for victims and their families, so it’s essential to understand the statistics on medical specialties involved in such cases. This blog will explore the trends associated with catastrophic injury lawsuits related to different types of physician practices. Our goal is to inform and provide those looking for a suitable medical malpractice attorney with an overview of the main trends in these types of cases.

Utilizing data from A Call for Action: Insights From a Decade of Malpractice Claims, we have compiled the following:

Injury Severity Trends

As more sophisticated tools, techniques, and equipment become available to medical professionals, the risk for more serious conditions remains. Across all medical specialties, medical malpractice events tended to fall into the following severity categories:

  • Low-severity - 25.1%
  • Medium-severity - 42.4%
  • High-severity - 8.7%
  • Death - 23.8%

Events involving high-severity injuries and death account for 33% of claims with little variability year to year. High-severity injuries and death are classified as catastrophic injuries and are highlighted across different fields as follows:

Surgery Injury Severity Trends

  • High-severity - 4.2%
  • Death - 8.2%

Obstetrics Injury Severity Trends

  • High-severity - 29.0%
  • Death - 26.3%

Urgent Care Injury Severity Trends

  • High-severity - 4.0%
  • Death - 18.4%

Medication Injury Severity Trends

  • High-severity - 5.8%
  • Death - 32.1%

Physician Claims Trends

Physicians face an immense amount of pressure within their profession today. Challenges such as the influence of health information technology, production pressures, and declines in workplace satisfaction have all been contributing factors to the increasing burnout rate among doctors. Both nationally and individually, organizations have taken steps to help support medical professionals by providing resources that aim to ensure doctor safety, effectiveness, and well-being. Despite these measures, however, physicians and their patients continue to suffer. The following claims trends among physicians were as follows:

  • On average, there are 4.4 claims per 100 physicians.
  • Physicians aged 35 to 44 have the highest claim rates of other age groups at 3.4 claims per 100 physicians.
  • Surgeons aged 35 to 44 have the highest claim rates overall at 12.2 claims per 100 physicians.
  • 63% of surgical claims involve a surgeon with multiple claims.

Tulsa Medical Malpractice Attorneys

If you or a loved one have sustained catastrophic injuries due to medical error or negligence, it is important to contact an experienced malpractice attorney who can help you recover the compensation you deserve. The attorneys at Brewster & De Angelis have successfully represented many clients in catastrophic malpractice cases and are available to answer any questions about your case. Contact us today at (918) 265-1214 or by filling out our secure online contact form.

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