New York Far and Away Home to Highest Amount of Medical Malpractice Payouts in 2012


Medical malpractice lawsuits have long been the topic of political rhetoric and other positioning by public officials, and while many people decry the fact that these lawsuits are ever filed, the fact of the matter is that patients who are injured by medical negligence need an outlet to defend their legal rights.  Some states have different standards and different norms when it comes to medical malpractice lawsuits, and there are many different ways to compare jurisdictions.  However, the federal government has recently provided data that provides one point of comparison.

That point of comparison involves the amount of payouts made for medical malpractice lawsuits in all of the jurisdictions in the United States.  The data was released from the United States Department of Health and Human Services’ National Practitioner Data Bank, and according to that data New York was home to by far the highest amount in medical malpractice payouts during the calendar year of 2012.  In fact, New York payouts were more than twice the amount of the next-highest state, which was Pennsylvania.

Specifically, the top payouts for medical malpractice lawsuits during the last complete calendar year were as follows:

  1. New York – $763,088,250
  2. Pennsylvania – $316,167,500
  3. California – $222,926,200
  4. New Jersey – $206,668,250
  5. Florida – $203,671,100

There were more than 12,100 medical malpractice payouts across the United States in 2012, and settlements made up a staggering 93 percent of the total amount of payouts.  Judgments accounted for only five percent of this total amount.  The data was also organized to break down the reasons that these payouts were made based on the mistakes that were alleged by patients and their attorneys.  These reasons included:

  1. Diagnostic errors – 33 percent of the allegations
  2. Surgical errors – 24 percent of the allegations
  3. Treatment errors – 18 percent of the allegations
  4. Obstetrics – 11 percent of the allegations

Finally, the data included a breakdown of the percentages of the payouts that were made based on the severity of the harm done to the patient.  This breakdown is as follows:

  1. Patient’s death – 31 percent of the cases
  2. Significant permanent injury – 19 percent of the cases
  3. Major permanent injury – 18 percent of the cases
  4. Minor temporary injury – 3 percent of the cases
  5. Emotional injury – 1 percent of the cases

Based on all of this data, it’s clear that there is a lot of skill among the population of New York medical malpractice lawyers.  It’s also clear that the laws in the state are such that patients have the right to pursue remedies when they are wronged by medical professionals and/or medical facilities. 

If you or someone you love has been injured because of negligent or otherwise substandard medical care, you need to take action to protect your legal rights.  You can do so by contacting The Fitzgerald Law Firm today to schedule a free initial consultation.