Although working in the health care industry can be rewarding, you must also account for significant risks and exposures. Even the most experienced and responsible medical providers may eventually make a mistake that could have dire consequences for a patient’s short- and long-term health. Furthermore, a misdiagnosis or error during treatment may have significant ramifications for your patient and your practice. Even if allegations are unfounded, accusations of malpractice could jeopardize your finances and future. With that in mind, malpractice insurance may be a necessary investment.
What Is Malpractice Insurance?
Malpractice insurance, also known as medical malpractice insurance, is integral to any health care provider’s insurance portfolio. This coverage generally acts as professional liability insurance for health care professionals. Given the importance of your services and the potential consequences of a mistake, ensuring you have the financial protection provided by a suitable malpractice insurance policy is crucial.
What Does Malpractice Insurance Cover?
In the wake of a malpractice lawsuit, your malpractice insurance may be able to provide financial assistance for many potential costs and losses. Although policy details may vary, adequate malpractice coverage can generally help pay for the following:
- Legal defense
- Court costs
- Arbitration costs
- Compensatory damages
It should also be noted that the type of malpractice insurance you maintain may affect whether past incidents are covered. This is generally determined by which of the following classifications your policy falls into:
- Occurrence malpractice insurance—These policies can provide financial assistance for malpractice claims if the incident allegedly occurred while your insurance was active, even if the lawsuit is filed after coverage has lapsed.
- Claims-made malpractice insurance—These policies can only cover costs arising from malpractice claims if accusations are brought while your coverage is active and if the incident that gave rise to the claim occurred after a specified date, known as a retroactive date. As such, lawsuits filed years after your policy period or extended reporting period have expired generally will not be covered.
Protect Yourself With the Right Coverage
As a health care professional, you bear significant responsibility. Your patients and clients entrust you with their health and wellness; even a slight misstep could prove catastrophic. With that in mind, it’s essential to prioritize a comprehensive malpractice insurance policy.
Having served the Rochester and Jericho areas for nearly 100 years, Paris-Kirwan Insurance is here to help. Our agents will work with you to assess your malpractice risks and exposures and provide optimal coverage solutions. Contact us today to get started.
This blog is intended for informational and educational use only. It is not exhaustive and should not be construed as legal advice. Please contact your insurance professional for further information.