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Wed May 11, 2011
Governor re-opening conversation on malpractice insurance costs for doctors
By Bob Beck
Laramie, WY – Wyoming has not revisited ways to reduce malpractice insurance costs for doctors since 2004, when citizens rejected a proposed constitutional amendment to allow the state to cap damages in medical malpractice cases. Some argue that those high malpractice insurance costs are discouraging doctors from remaining in Wyoming, or keeping them from coming in the first place. But there is wide disagreement over whether capping malpractice damages would affect doctors' insurance costs. Governor Matt Mead says he is once again looking at the issue.
"We have not said here is our Tort Reform plan lets go do it, instead what I've done is sent people out from this office, starting first with Trial Lawyers, the Physicians, the Insurance folks, to see if there is anything we can do to lower the cost of insurance for those people in the Medical field."
Mead says he is trying to determine whether there is any course of action those groups could agree on that might help address malpractice costs. He notes that once voters rejected the 2004 ballot measure, discussion on the issue stopped.