FOUR Necessary Insurance Policies...

Uncategorized Dec 29, 2021
 

Not only do you need malpractice insurance, which is something you would not start your practice without, but you also need three other types of insurance in your practice and business. There are differences between each, and so you need to be sure you are covered in the various areas they address. Today, doctors are not recommended to be self-insured, so talk to an insurance agent you trust in regards to that.

Malpractice Insurance

Malpractice is the first insurance you want to get quotes on from your insurance company, making sure that coverage is in place in your practice. As you probably know, malpractice will cover you for your clinical decisions.  There are all kinds of malpractice: claims made, occurrence-based, and tail, etc.  A conversation with your insurance agent will provide the details you need to make informed decisions.

Telemedicine Malpractice Coverage

Practicing telemedicine is common today. So if your malpractice coverage does not already include this, make sure to get a telemedicine malpractice coverage policy as well. Talk to your insurance agent. It should be included in most policies today. But if it's not, make sure you get a rider or an addendum so that you are fully covered. If you are practicing telemedicine outside of your state and are licensed in multiple states to do so, make sure you communicate that to your insurance agent so that the policy that's written reflects your activities in each of those states as well.

General Liability Insurance (Business Owners Policy or BOP)

I typically recommend this, and I definitely recommend it if you have a brick and mortar location. And I typically also recommend it for people who don’t, because General Business Policy as opposed to Malpractice covers more. Malpractice will cover your clinical decisions and what results there from. General Business Policy includes things like slip and fall, fires or floods, sometimes hurricanes for all the possessions of your practice or your business. It also covers actions that are non-medical, non-clinical. So if you're both the doctor in the exam room, and you're also the CEO in the boardroom, the malpractice coverage isn't going to cover the CEO activities, entering into contracts or making promises to other companies or other people. Other decisions that are business related that could result in torts, or in other words, lawsuits against your company, would not be covered by the Malpractice Insurance. Malpractice Insurance can get expensive in parts of the country. But this BOP coverage would cover these situations and is somewhere in the neighborhood of $50 a month. 

Check with your insurance agent to see if that's something that you need to have as well. 

Cyber Liability Insurance

Cyber Liability Insurance is a newer offering out of insurance agencies. With ransomware attacks on the rise around the world, it's something that you may want to check and see if it is already in your coverage. If it's not, you should consider this coverage, getting a new policy. Ransomware is a piece of virus or software that will come into your computer, which can do a lot of damage, but typically what happens is it'll freeze all of your software and freeze all of your files, so you can't even access the files on your own computer until you pay a ransom for access again. This obviously causes a couple problems. First, paying them money for the ransom the first time will not insure that it does not happen again.  What's to prevent them from doing it again? But more importantly, in the medical space, someone that has access to all your files now has access to all your patient data. So it is most likely a HIPAA breach as well. In every breach, fines range from $500 per record to $5,000 per record, based on the level and extent of the breach. So Cyber Liability Insurance makes sense because a financial hit to you for HIPAA breaches and the inability to do business because of locked software and files will cost you money each day that your business is unable to operate. Talk with your insurance agent. Sometimes Cyber Liability Insurance may be included in Malpractice, or sometimes it's included in the General Business Policy. Definitely make sure that you at least ask your insurance agent about it. 

Claims Limits

The most common levels of coverage or coverage and limits are 1 million per event and 3 million for the aggregate in that same event. Have that conversation with your insurance agent. You can pay less in premiums if you lower that, but you know on the flip side, they will not cover as much. 

Conclusion

These four policies are typically recommended for people to have in their medical practice: Malpractice, Telemedicine, General Business (BOP), and Cyber Liability. So talk to your bank, which sometimes offers agencies help as you write these insurance policies.

If you already have insurance, talk to your existing insurance agent about adding them to make sure you're fully covered. If not, initiate with a new company, asking them about those four things. 

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