SB 12-FN – FINAL VERSION
SENATE BILL 12-FN
AN ACT relative to screening panels for medical injury claims.
SPONSORS: Sen. Bradley, Dist 3; Sen. Houde, Dist 5
This bill reestablishes the medical malpractice panel and insurance oversight committee.
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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.
Matter removed from current law appears [
in brackets and struckthrough.]
Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.
STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Eleven
AN ACT relative to screening panels for medical injury claims.
Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:
241:1 New Sections; Medical Malpractice Panel and Insurance Oversight Committee Established. Amend RSA 519-B by inserting after section 12 the following new sections:
519-B:13 Medical Malpractice Panel and Insurance Oversight Committee Established.
I. There is established a committee to study medical malpractice insurance rates in this state and the mandatory panels for medical injury claims process.
II. The committee shall consist of 4 members of the senate appointed by the senate president, and 4 members of the house of representatives, appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives. The house members shall include at least:
(a) One member of the house judiciary committee.
(b) One member of the house health, human services and elderly affairs committee.
(c) One member of the house commerce and consumer affairs committee.
III. The members of the committee shall elect a chairperson from among the members. The first meeting of the committee shall be called by the first-named senate member. The first meeting of the committee shall be held within 45 days of the effective date of this section. Five members of the committee shall constitute a quorum.
IV. Members of the committee shall receive mileage at the legislative rate when attending to the duties of the committee.
V. The committee shall review and analyze information provided by the administrative office of the courts and the insurance department related to medical injury liability claim activity in order to determine the effectiveness of mandatory screening panels for medical injury claims established in this chapter. The committee’s review shall include, but not be limited to, whether medical malpractice insurance premiums have been affected and whether there has been any limitation of access to the courts by injured parties.
VI. The committee shall make a final report of its findings about medical liability insurance rates and the mandatory panel process and any recommendations for proposed legislation to the speaker of the house of representatives, the senate president, the house clerk, the senate clerk, the governor, and the state library on or before December 1, 2013. The report shall include a recommendation to terminate, continue, or amend RSA 519-B.
I.(a) The administrative office of the courts shall collect data on medical injury claims and submit a report on the screening panel process to the committee established in RSA 519-B:13 and to the insurance commissioner on or before September 30 of each year.
(b) The report required by this paragraph shall include the number of medical injury cases filed, pending, and resolved; and the number of panel hearings and the number of panel hearing days during the fiscal year ending on the June 30 preceding the report date.
(c) The report required by this paragraph shall also include, for medical injury cases resolved during the fiscal year:
(1) The mean and median lengths of time from initial filing to final resolution.
(2) The number and average settlement amount of cases that were resolved prior to the panel hearing.
(3) The number and average settlement amount of cases that were resolved after a panel hearing but before a trial.
(4) The number and average settlement amount of cases that were resolved by or after a jury verdict.
(d) The report required by this paragraph shall also include, for medical injury cases in which a panel made findings during the fiscal year, the number of cases that fell into each category of possible results of a panel hearing (unanimous for the plaintiff; majority for the plaintiff; unanimous for the defendant; majority for the defendant), the status, and, if applicable, the results of the cases in each category.
(e) To the extent possible, the report required by this paragraph shall include comparative data from the previous 5 years.
II.(a) The insurance commissioner shall report to the committee established in RSA 519-B:13 annually, on or before November 1 of each year, on the medical malpractice market and the effects of the panel process established in this chapter. Such reports shall include, but not be limited to, the average rates of medical liability insurance for categories of medical providers and specialties identified by the insurance commissioner, the frequency and severity of medical injury claims, and the time for resolution of medical injury claims from first notice to final resolution.
(b) The insurance commissioner may adopt rules to collect the data from insurers necessary to prepare the report required by this paragraph. To the extent the commissioner collects information from insurers regarding individual claims, loss adjustment and other expenses, reserves, indemnity payments, or other financial information that is not otherwise reported to the commissioner and available to the public, such information shall be treated as examination materials, kept confidential, and not be subject to RSA 91-A.
241:2 Repeal. The following are repealed:
I. RSA 519-B:13, relative to the medical malpractice panel and insurance oversight committee.
II. RSA 519-B:14, relative to reports.
241:3 Effective Date.
I. Section 2 of this act shall take effect December 31, 2013.
II. The remainder of this act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.
Approved: July 13, 2011
Effective Date: I. Section 2 shall take effect December 31, 2013.
II. Remainder shall take effect September 11, 2011.