What You Need to Know About Malpractice Insurance
Professionals in the health-care industry must account for many risks and exposures. A misdiagnosis or treatment error could have catastrophic consequences for the health and wellness of your patients. Furthermore, such an incident could also have devastating financial ramifications for your business. With that in mind, it’s necessary for all health-care providers to understand and acquire adequate malpractice insurance.
The insurance experts at Paris-Kirwan Associates make it their mission to help medical professionals in the Rochester area protect themselves with robust insurance portfolios, including optimal malpractice policies.
What Does Malpractice Insurance Cover?
Even the most diligent and careful medical providers may not always be able to eliminate certain risks. Many things can go wrong while providing health-care services, and without malpractice insurance, a single mistake could lead to significant damages. Fortunately, malpractice insurance can provide crucial financial assistance for various expenses arising from an error, including the following:
- Medical damages
- Punitive and compensatory damages
- Legal fees and court fees
- Arbitration and settlement costs
Obtaining the Right Malpractice Insurance
There are several methods for medical professionals to acquire a malpractice insurance policy, including the following:
- They purchase an individual or group malpractice policy through a traditional private insurance provider.
- They begin working for an employer that already has its own malpractice policy, such as a hospital.
- They join a medical risk retention group that offers malpractice coverage to members.
While acquiring and maintaining a malpractice insurance policy is a good first step, your business must also take the time to analyze your specific circumstances to ensure that your coverage will provide sufficient protection. In general, most malpractice insurance policies can be classified as one of the following two categories:
- Claims-made policies—These arrangements provide policyholders with coverage as long as insurance was in effect both when an alleged malpractice incident took place and when the claim was filed.
- Occurrence policies—These policies provide additional protection by offering coverage regardless of when a lawsuit is filed, as long as insurance was active at the time of the alleged incident.
Due to the aforementioned differences between these two types of malpractice insurance, it’s possible that a claims-made policy will not offer sufficient coverage if a patient sues you for an incident that occurred years earlier.
How Much Does Malpractice Insurance Cost?
Like most types of insurance, premiums for an adequate malpractice insurance policy may vary significantly based on several factors. In most cases, medical professionals can expect providers to analyze the following criteria:
- Policy details (e.g., coverage limits, occurrence vs. claims-made, etc.)
- Previous claims
- Medical specialty
- Years of experience
Protect Yourself With the Right Coverage
Working in the medical industry can be rewarding and lucrative, but with patients and clients entrusting you with their well-being, you bear significant responsibility. Regardless of how safe and cautious you may be while making diagnoses and providing treatment, mistakes are inevitable. Without sufficient malpractice insurance, you may lack the ability to manage the financial ramifications of an error and resulting lawsuit.
We’re here to help. The agents of Paris-Kirwan Associates have the knowledge and experience to assess your business’s malpractice insurance needs accurately. We will work with you to build a suitable policy that protects your finances and future. Contact us today to begin.