As a health professional, you help people every day who have health challenges and need your help. Unfortunately, even with your years of education and experience, it’s possible for you to make a mistake. If an error – real or perceived – ever results in a lawsuit, it can have severe effects on your ability to practice medicine. One of the best ways to protect yourself is by getting an adequate medical malpractice insurance policy in place.
An independent insurance agent can provide professional assistance to help you identify your risks and the best coverage to meet your needs. These agents have signed a Pledge of Performance and are dedicated to assisting you. Your member agent can help you compare medical malpractice insurance quotes from several insurance providers and identify the plan that meets your needs and budget. Contact an independent insurance agent for personal assistance today.
Medical Malpractice Facts
- Anywhere from 44,000 to 98,000 people die each year due to a preventable medical error.
- Medical errors that occur in hospitals cost between $17 billion and $29 billion annually.
- In 2000, $6.4 billion was spent on medical malpractice insurance.
- 1 in 8 preventable medical errors results in a medical malpractice claim.
- Damages are rarely awarded in medical malpractice claims.
- Medical malpractice insurance costs physician’s 3.2% of their revenue.
- 5% of doctors carry 54% of all medical malpractice claims.
What Is Medical Malpractice Insurance?
Malpractice insurance is a form of professional liability insurance that deals with the specific risks healthcare professionals face. Even if you have employer coverage, it’s a good idea to have your own medical malpractice insurance. If a patient accuses you of deviating from the standards of practice and desires compensation, a claim can be made against your malpractice liability policy or a patient could file a lawsuit against you.
Your medical malpractice insurance will provide for your legal defense and settlement costs, potentially protecting your practice from severe financial hardship.
What Does Medical Malpractice Insurance Cover?
This form of insurance will cover your legal liability as a health practitioner, and will protect you in two important ways. First, it will pay for your legal defense, which is provided through your insurance company. It will also pay the costs of legal settlements, up to the limits set on your policy.
Malpractice suits can be very expensive, so it’s important to find an excellent medical malpractice insurance company that can provide full protection. In addition to assisting with a lawsuit, your insurance policy can help cover the costs of conduct reviews by peer panels. If your peer review decision causes a loss of income, your malpractice insurance could then step in to help provide compensation.
Some healthcare professionals may assume that since they work in an office environment, the company’s liability policy can handle any malpractice claims.
Unfortunately, there can be serious gaps in your employer’s coverage that may leave you responsible for a large majority of costs associated with a malpractice lawsuit.
Some employer liability policies will have certain exclusions that you may not know about.
Although your employer’s liability policy is meant to protect employees in some instances, if there is a conflict of interest, you could be left to your own devices. When you purchase your own insurance policy and work with personal medical malpractice insurance carriers, you know exactly how you’re protected.
Who Needs Medical Malpractice Insurance?
Many different people involved in the health profession need the protection of malpractice insurance. This includes:
- Practicing physicians and surgeons
- Independent health professionals including naturopathic doctors
- Hospital and medical clinics
- Med-spas, skin clinics
- Plastic surgery centers
- Weight loss clinics
- Healthcare groups and HMOs
- Dentists and orthodontists
How Much Does Medical Malpractice Insurance Cost?
The cost of medical malpractice insurance varies depending on your practice and where it’s located, in addition to several other factors. A heart surgeon runs a greater risk of a malpractice versus an RN responsible for taking blood. One area that tends to have a high rate of litigation is obstetrics, but today no areas of specialty are immune to lawsuits.
Costs tend to vary among states. For example, malpractice costs in Minnesota could cost anywhere from $4,000 to $17,000 per year, depending on your specialty. But in California, a surgeon can expect to pay anywhere from $22,000 to $34,000 per year.
Cost is also dependent on the amount of coverage you purchase. If your employer offers liability insurance, ask if there are specific caps on individual employee coverage. You’ll have a better idea of just how much coverage you need, but don’t simply choose the cheapest insurance rate. Be sure to work with a knowledgeable insurance professional to find the specific coverage that meets your needs.
Affordable Medical Malpractice Insurance Quotes
If you want reliable coverage at an affordable price, contact an independent insurance agent in your local area. An agent can compare policies from multiple medical malpractice insurance companies and help you review several different medical malpractice insurance quotes.
It is important to find the coverage for your specific risks. The right malpractice insurance policy can put your mind at ease and allow you to provide your patients with the best care. To get the information you need, contact an independent insurance agent today.