(12/03/2001)
Legislators have approved a massive medical malpractice plan late Saturday, reluctantly agreeing to state involvement and a tax break for doctors.

The final bill combines parts of what legislators, doctors, insurers and lawyers wanted to create, three alternative insurance programs.

The first is a limited state-run plan to act as a short-term stopgap that would lead to one of the other two plans.

The proposal offers guaranteed insurance through the state Board of Risk and Insurance Management. Health care providers who have no other insurance options would be covered up to one million dollars.

Two other systems set up in the legislation would be used later. One would create a mutual company run and paid for by doctors. The other would create an assigned risk pool mandating that casualty insurance companies extend their coverage to high-risk doctors.


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