Medical Professional Liability Insurance – Claims Made, Occurrence

Medical professional liability insurance is another name for medical malpractice insurance. There are two types of medical professional liability insurance, claims-made and occurrence policies. There are advantages and disadvantages to each of these types of policies.

Claims-made insurance policies are one year long policies that are renewed each year without interrupting the coverage. Any claims made during the claims-made policy period will be covered, no matter when the incidence actually occurred, as long as the incident occurred after the original purchase of the claims-made policy. This means coverage is retroactive back to the first policy. This type of medical malpractice insurance is cheaper in the first few years of coverage as it is less likely claims will be made in the first few years of coverage. Premiums increase each year up to five years, when the reach the approximate cost of the occurrence policies.

Once a claims made insurance policy is cancelled, no further claims are covered. However, tail coverage can be purchased to cover any claims that occur for a certain amount of time after cancellation.

Occurrence medical professional liability insurance covers all claims that occur during the coverage period, regardless of when the claim is made. Because there is no way of knowing how many claims will eventually be made due to actions occurring any given year, the premiums for occurrence medical malpractice insurance are not necessarily cheaper in the beginning like they are with claims-made policies. This type of insurance covers the doctor forever against claims that result from the period in which the policy was in effect.

Both of these forms of medical professional liability insurance are very expensive, so there are currently a lot of organizations working on proposals to solve the problem of compensating any patients with legitimate medical malpractice claims without doctors having to pay huge premiums for liability insurance.

Some of the proposed solutions for the medical professional liability include capping non-economic damages, trying medical professional liability cases in a tribunal system outside of the main court system, use a no-fault system for compensation, using alternative dispute resolution methods like arbitration and medication, and using screening panels to review cases and determine whether or not cases should proceed to court.

Doctors need to have medical professional liability coverage in order to protect them from medical malpractice claims, which could otherwise bankrupt them should they occur. Doctors can lose a lot of money even on medical malpractice claims where they are not at fault, as they have to prove this.

In order to get the best deal on medical professional liability insurance doctors should check around with the different insurance companies to see which offers the best policy at the best price. The cheapest medical professional liability policy is not always the best, as different policies cover different things. Source: Medicalmalpracticeaid dot com

Can a Medical Professional Succeed in a Home-Based Internet Business Venture?

The medical world is a far different animal than the home-based Internet business industry. Medical personnel will readily admit that we are largely “computer-illiterate”. As an obstetrician, I started writing my progress notes on a computer only this year. I have yet to purchase a PDA! Like many of my colleagues, I am pretty nervous when it comes to attempting to tackle anything online, much less to cast my fate to the net and launch a home-based Internet business. I don’t know about nursing school,or the other health professions but in medical school we learned very little about business, and I like most of my colleagues am content to outsource the accounting, coding, transcription, advertising, etc. and focus on medicine. That is, I was content to do so until I had triplets! That’s when I suddenly found myself faced with a total career/lifestyle change!

There are some similarities between a career in a medical profession and one in a home-based internet business opportunity. There are hundreds of medical schools, and more than that of Internet businesses. Naturally as with striving to get into the best school, I wanted to get into the best business opportunity. So, I did my research. I looked for an opportunity with a good reputation, one that had been around for awhile, and one that was strong in the basics. As with a good medical school, the importance of excellent teachers and mentors in business can’t be underestimated. Finally, it was important to find the opportunity that was right for me, just as some medical centers are particularly renowned in certain fields of medicine, businesses emphasize different products or services. Being new online, I felt it was critical to launch a business with as much support as possible–I definitely wanted to have my hand held.

The next step, both in the medical professions and in a home-based Internet business venture is to build the customer base. Trust is a huge component of building a customer list as it is with a patient list. Word of mouth can work for or against one. Customers like patients who appreciate what has been done for them, will return and will refer their friends and relatives. Discussion forums in the on-line world would be the equivalent of a lecture series in the medical world. Participating in forums and displaying expertise will result in a boost to the participant’s reputation and generate more interest in the participant’s product. Link-backs in the online world are what we medical people would equate with referrals. I send my patient to you–and you send yours to me. News letters are not as commonly used in the medical fields as in business, but free samples are big incentives in both.

An area of wider divergence is the advertising component. This is more of a challenge for me. Traditionally, medical specialists have frowned upon advertising, with the exception of
“hanging out a shingle”. An online business on the other hand, wouldn’t last very long without advertising! Truthfully, however, SEO for a web site is not vastly different from placing an ad in the yellow pages for a doctor. The ad should be well and tastefully done, and if done properly, can gain the desired result of attracting customers. A physician does not want too garish an ad, just as a web site too full of keywords would be considered spam. Something else medical professionals want to avoid is “viral” marketing–although the doctor’s office is a notoriously bad place for contracting viruses–spreading viruses amongst the patients does not improve the reputation of the health professional.

The business itself becomes important once the customer “walks through the door”, and again, there are more similarities than differences between a doctor’s office and home-based Internet business. A physician’s office must be clean, attractive and efficient. If a client has to wait too long, if their information is misplaced, if they don’t receive the service they came for, or if the price is too high, they won’t return. A web site must be like a well-run office–attractive, user-friendly, easily navigable and fast. Ancillary services such as the blood draw area, or x ray should be readily accessible for the patient. An equivalent in the marketing world would be providing a link to or discount for a zip-file opener if your product comes as a zipped file. Finally, a web site like a physicians office must stay current. To be successful it is crucial to offer the latest technology, procedures and medicines, similarly a web site must stay up-to-date. If the competition has one–the home-based Internet business venture should have a better one!

Over all, in my opinion there are more similarities than the differences between a home-based Internet business venture and a doctor’ office. The same qualities that make a health care professional successful in health care are going to help that person succeed online–integrity, determination, and hard work.

What Medical Professionals Should Know Before Purchasing Malpractice Insurance

Malpractice insurance is something that every medical professional should consider when starting their career. Even though insurance is not mandatory in every state, it should still be a concern considering the type of society that we live in today. Medical professionals are taking a huge risk if they don’t protect themselves with insurance.

If you are considering purchasing malpractice insurance, here are a few things you should know before committing to a policy:

* Not all medical professional liability insurance policies are the same. If anything, you should know what is covered and what is excluded in policy. Some insurance providers will only cover direct patient care and will not cover care outside of a certain geographical area. There are other policies that will cover all work-related functions or activities outside of patient care such as supervision of residents, committee work, or volunteer work. It’s important to let your insurance broker or insurance carrier know all the different types of activities you will be performing and to find a policy that suits your specific needs. Remember that every medical professional is different, so every insurance policy will be different.

* Another thing that you should know about insurance companies is that they vary in the services that they provide. Just because one company offers a certain policy doesn’t mean another company is going to offer the same thing.

* Be aware that medical malpractice insurance falls into three categories: claims-made, occurrence and claims-paid coverage. The most common type of policy is claims-made coverage. Claims-made policies cover a physician for any claims that are reported to the insurance carrier during the policy period.

* Find out what happens if a claim is filed. This is something that your insurance broker or carrier should walk you through because every process is different.

* When comparing malpractice insurance rates, take into account the details of each policy and the types of services the carriers offer to be sure they are the same. If a rate is really low compared with those of other companies, find out why.

Medical malpractice insurance is not something that you want to think about, but it can make a significant difference in your career as a professional. Having insurance just gives you a little peace of mind knowing that if the unexpected were to happen, you would be covered.

Who Needs Insurance For Medical Professionals?

Individuals are becoming much more aware of the rights. There is a growing acceptance by society in general that anyone has the right sue and to claim compensation if they feel they are justified in doing so. Many people do when they believe they have received treatment which has been detrimental to them physically or mentally. That is one of the main reasons why insurance for medical professionals has become a necessity.

The laws on medical negligence or malpractice can differ from state to state as they do with most things. But in general the laws apply to any medical practitioner who works in a state recognized medical field.

Surgeons are possibly top of the list of medical people who need insurance. There are no absolute guarantees with surgery but patients are advised of any potential risks involved and make the choice to take those risk. What they are not given a choice about is the surgeon who has been working too long hours, or the one who does not have the experience required or may just be plain incompetent.

Cosmetic surgery is one area which regularly makes the tabloid newspapers when the rich and famous are involved. If the patients expectations are not met or only partially met the potential for a law suit is high and the surgeon would be best advised to have adequate insurance.

Nursing staff can be prime targets for negligence claims. They have the most consistent interaction with patients. They distribute medications, often have to lift or move patients and provide personal care. The persistent demands for their time and attention could result in mistakes being made.

So it would be safe to assume that anyone who is involved in the health care service should be eligible to take out insurance for medical professionals as a precaution in case they cause harm to another through negligence or accidentally.

Medical Professional Career Education Opportunities and Courses

The medical industry is filled with a variety of professionals from entry-level assistants to hospital administrators. Medical professional career education opportunities and courses offer students a wide range of programs that give them the opportunities to step into many careers. Students can gain the appropriate skills needed to become medical professionals by completing programs related to their goals.

Vocational colleges offer certificate, diploma, and associates degree programs. The undergraduate training received is applicable to careers as assistants and technicians inside many medical professions. The coursework completed typically focuses exclusively on career related skills. Within associates degree programs some general education courses like English and science are worked through to give students a broader knowledge base. The educational opportunities offered in this field are numerous so students should research options. Common concentration areas include:

*Dialysis Technology

Students learn to work with patients that suffer from renal failure or commonly referred to as kidney disease. This disease produces an excess of harmful wastes in the blood stream. Training focuses on all of the procedures used to perform dialysis, which removes the excess fluids from the body. Most programs for this career field are completed at the certificate level of training.

*Medical Assisting

Training opportunities for this area of the field typically require students to complete associates degree programs. Students learn to perform a variety of duties including clerical work and clinical care. Professionals assist physicians and nurses by keeping the day-to-day operations of a practice running smoothly. Filing records and scheduling appointments are some common clerical duties conducted. Taking vital signs and preparing patients for examinations are some clinical areas performed.

*Phlebotomy

This clinical career opportunity has professionals extracting blood from patients for a variety of reasons. A wide skill set is learned inside educational training, which includes injecting fluids, administering medications, and collecting blood specimens. Associate’s degree programs are the educational standard for this field. Students enter the profession understanding several concepts such as blood banking and hematology.

*Clinical Lab Assistant

This health care training covers the essential knowledge needed to work inside medical and research based labs. By learning the different procedures performed inside the industry students can perform several tasks. Translating terminology, understanding abbreviations, testing specimens, managing quality control factors, and working with patients are all career related skills learned inside training. Many students enter the field after first completing certificate programs.

The curriculum for each field will change according to the professional goal. For example, the core courses inside a clinical lab assistant program include subjects on health care, medical terminology, and diagnostic testing. Inside a phlebotomy program students learn about the field through courses on clinical biology, urinalysis, coagulation, and anatomy.

Students that enter accredited programs will find that curricula are specifically tailored to the area of the field they are pursuing, such as medical assisting or IV certification. Full accreditation is provided by agencies like the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools ( http://www.acics.org/ ) to medical professional schools and colleges that offer quality career training. To gain an education and enter a career in this capacity, students should research their options and complete programs that fit their needs.

DISCLAIMER: Above is a GENERIC OUTLINE and may or may not depict precise methods, courses and/or focuses related to ANY ONE specific school(s) that may or may not be advertised at PETAP.org.

Copyright 2010 – All rights reserved by PETAP.org.