CAMBRIDGE, MA, September 5, 2014 –CRICO Strategies has released a set of data profiles related to some of the highest risk areas for medical malpractice vulnerability—obstetrics, surgery, diagnosis, and a national overview. Available for professional use in research, publications, and presentations, each data set contains a series of charts and summary information including elements such as responsible service, major allegations, clinical severity, and contributing factors.

The data profiles are a product of CRICO’s Comparative Benchmarking System (CBS), which contains more than 300,000 medical malpractice cases, representing about 30 percent of United States malpractice cases[1]. These cases, coded using CRICO’s proprietary taxonomy, originate from captive and commercial insurers, and include a variety of academic medical centers and community hospitals. Heather Riah, assistant vice president, CRICO Strategies says, “Part of our mission is to advance the national patient safety movement. While full access to our CBS database is by membership only, researchers, authors, and patient safety leaders, now have immediate access to sample data that may provide insight into patient safety vulnerabilities. Our goal is to provide data that can be used to advance research on patient safety interventions.”

For more than 30 years, CRICO has provided industry-leading medical professional liability coverage, claims management, and patient safety resources to its Harvard medical community using data-driven evidence from its malpractice claims to promote patient safety and minimize lawsuits. This proven, learn-from-our-mistakes approach has resulted in lower premiums for CRICO members and favorable trends in their malpractice claims. Institutions not affiliated with the Harvard medical community are able to participate in CBS through CRICO Strategies, a division of CRICO. This national representation of malpractice cases provides robust benchmarking and learning opportunities to all CBS members.

CRICO’s proprietary Clinical Coding Taxonomy is the foundation of CBS, providing insight into the specific factors driving patient harm and financial loss. This taxonomy is a structured set of concepts and underlying code sets that classify and describe malpractice and patient safety events in order to facilitate analysis and reporting. It captures facts and inferences from medical records, expert reviews, and legal documents, and each case is reviewed and coded at key intervals from the filing date to closing. Through routine audits for coding consistency and bi-weekly educational sessions for the clinical coding specialists, this highly governed taxonomy ensures that the coded malpractice case data served to analysts and researchers is highly credible.

The CRICO CBS data profiles on obstetrics, surgery, diagnosis, and a national overview, are available online at

[1] National Practitioner Database

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