Utica, NY (WIBX) - Excellus BlueCross BlueShield has issued new facts about the varying cost of medical malpractice coverage for physicians across the state.

Doctor Frank Dubeck of Excellus says that the premiums paid for downstate physicians are considerably higher than the rates upstate.

So why the dramatic difference?

Excellus says the varying rates depend on the experience levels of other physicians in those regions.

We spoke to Doctor Marybeth McCall, who explains a reason for the great difference in cost.

"We do have a lot of safety measures in our hospitals here in upstate and we believe that we really deliver very good care," says McCall, "but downstate does have significant awards when there is a case found for malpractice and therefore the costs are higher," McCall said.

McCall says a fact sheet on this topic is available at excellusbcbs.com/factsheets.