NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

When Doctors Stop Delivering Babies

July 1, 2002

The medical liability insurance crisis is driving obstetricians and gynecologists from their practices in a number of states, where premiums have become so expensive as to be prohibitive.

  • The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists is warning that the rising premiums are threatening the availability of doctors to deliver babies in nine states.
  • The American Medical Association adds another three states to the list.
  • OB-GYN is always one of the hardest hit medical specialties because of the risk of birth defects and complications.
  • Pregnant women in these states -- finding their regular doctor has ceased practicing -- are having to scramble to find a new specialist.

Doctors and insurance companies say tort reform -- including such measures as caps on pain and suffering damages -- is the only way to solve the crisis. OB-GYNs can, on average, expect to be sued two or three times during their careers.

Source: Rita Ruben, "Fed-Up Obstetricians Look for a Way Out," USA Today, July 1, 2002.

For text


Browse more articles on Health Issues