Robert E. White Jr. is the President of The Doctors Company. He believes "social inflation will affect malpractice insurers."
We asked our readers and some members of our editorial advisory board to make predictions for 2024. Here's what Robert E. White Jr. had to say:
“Social inflation occurs when an insurer’s average claim amount grows faster than the overall inflation rate. Over the decade ending in 2021, social inflation has led to losses estimated to be between $2.4 billion and $3.5 billion — 8% to 11% — of all medical malpractice losses incurred by physician- focused insurers. The rapid uptick began in 2019. People are sympathetic to injured patients. Jurors also relate to credible, empathetic medical professionals, but it can be harder to evoke sympathy for a hospital.
As these cost trends continue, medical professional liability carriers may have to increase their rates to keep up with the losses. Therefore, although social inflation hits insurers first, it affects practices’ premiums.”