Gov. Pataki signed a one-year extension of New York's Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance Program, which provides additional insurance coverage for jury awards above $1 million at no cost to hospital-affiliated doctors and dentists.
The program, extended through June 30, 2004, dates to 1986, when doctors began to fear jury awards would grow too large for their $1 million-per-claim/$3 million-per-year insurance policies. Doctors have lobbied unsuccessfully to cap jury awards.
The extension is being financed with Health Care Reform Act revenues. Mr. Pataki also signed legislation changing how malpractice jury awards are paid to avoid double adjustments for inflation.
Copyright 2003, Crain Communications, Inc.
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