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NP Malpractice Claims Stats Previewed at ACNP

Published October 9, 2009 2:29 PM by Jill Rollet
In 2005, the nurse practitioner liability insurance provider CNA/NSO released the first and only study of claims made against NPs. This morning at the ACNP conference, the company offered updated statistics from a quantitative analysis of claims received by NSO and the results of a separate, qualitative survey of NPs insured by NSO, both those who have had claims filed against them and those with no claims.

Below are some interesting findings.

  • Of NSO policyholders, those most likely to be sued are male, are 65 or older, have a doctorate degree or work in a rural practice.

  • The number of years worked as an RN before becoming an NP had no statistically significant effect on the likelihood of being sued.

  • More experience practicing as an NP lessened the likelihood of being sued. Almost half of the claims made against NSO policyholders were made against NPs with less than 5 years experience.

  • NPs who earned their degrees through an online program were neither more nor less likely to be sued than those who attended a traditional program. And the number of clinical hours earned had no effect on likelihood of being sued.

  • NPs who had an NP mentor during their first 2 years of practice were less likely to be sued than those who had a physician mentor.

  • NPs who had claims made against them had less personnel support (from an MA, RN, NP, etc.) than those with no claims.

  • The average number of patients seen per day by all NPs in the survey was 16. Those who had been sued were seeing 18 or more patients per day.

  • Using EMRs limited claims: 72% of those who had been sued used only handwritten records.

  • NPs who worked in states with more autonomy had fewer claims against them. And NPs without prescriptive authority were twice as likely to be sued.

The speakers, Bruce Dmytrow from CNA and Michael Loughran from AON, said they expect the full report to be published by the end of the year.

What do you think? How will this affect your practice?


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