Three Areas of Exposure You May Not Have Thought About
Side Note: Just as the field of medicine is ever changing and growing for physicians, so is the business of running a successful medical practice. With our increasingly litigious society, the mounting requirements put on physicians by the federal government and the rapidly growing use of technology in medical practices today, new areas of risk are developing for doctors. As if the threat of med mal is not enough to worry about, the article below examines three of the most important areas of your practice where you may be overlooking additional risk and exposure.
1. Employment practices. Medical practices are similar in a lot of ways to any other business with employees. Physicians must be careful to abide by all relevant employment laws and minimize their liability. Charges of discrimination, sexual harassment and the like are just as possible in a medical practice as they are anywhere else. And, physicians need to be careful about termination of employment and issues of employee privacy like any other company. Defense of these claims can be quite expensive, time consuming and awards, if made, can be large. To protect medical practices against this kind of exposure, MyMedicalMalpracticeInsurance offers physicians a business office policy (BOP) and other kinds of specialty insurance. If you are interested in getting a quote for these kinds of policies, simply mention this in the “Additional Information and Comments” section of the quote form.
2. Medical practice administration. Even when done properly, coding, billing, and HIPAA requirements can prove to be an administrative challenge. But, if done incorrectly, administrative liability landmines abound. One of the most stressful medical practice administrative actions you may face is having a regulatory audit contractor (RAC) audit your Medicare charges for overpayments or “medically unnecessary” care. Such an audit can cost a physician’s practice time and a lot of money –money if past charges are asked to be refunded, or if the practice hires an independent auditor and/or an attorney to fight audit findings. Rather than hoping your medical practice doesn’t encounter such an action, or fearing that it might, a physician should expect such an audit and operate his or her practice accordingly. To protect physicians from this kind of risk, MyMedicalMalpracticeInsurance offers Medicare audit insurance. Again, simply mention that you are interested in this kind of insurance in the “Additional Information and Comments” section of the med mal quote form.
3. Privacy and data security. As we mentioned in a recent article, patient privacy and data security are growing areas of exposure for many practices with the advent of electronic medical records and federal requirements for patient privacy. If a medical practice also uses portable data technologies like flash drives, laptops or smart phones, a physician’s risk of a data breach increases further. Data breach (or cyber) coverage is also offered by MyMedicalMalpracticeInsurance. Simply request a quote in the “Additional Information and Comments” section of the quote form.
As a physician, you work hard to build your practice. We here at MyMedicalMalpracticeInsurance can help you protect it by offering policies customized to suit you and your medical practice.
Interested in lowering your professional liability rates? Complete our free, no-cost, no-obligation quote form today.
Beyond malpractice: Top 3 risks physicians should know about
February 9, 2011 By Patricia A. Costante
Today, physicians face enormous pressure, not just from the threat of malpractice litigation, but from the business of medicine. There are a mounting number of risks from lawsuits involving employment practices, medical practice administration regulations and privacy and data security. As an agent or broker, you can play a valuable role in educating doctors and medical practice managers on how they can minimize these risks and choose the right insurance protection.
Below is a further description of the threat in each of these areas, along with scenarios that illustrate the vulnerability of medical practices.
1. Employment practices
Any business with employees—including physicians—needs to be extra careful to protect against a myriad of employment practices claims. These include situations related to termination of employment, violation of employment discrimination laws, sexual harassment and invasion of privacy. Lawsuits relating to employment practices have been increasingly generating large awards, and the defense of these claims can be costly. Yet many medical practices are operating with no protection against this risk.