How does a physician know if they are getting a good quote on their Medical Professional Liability (medical malpractice insurance)? In a prior blog, I indicated a cheap price may lead to a below average policy the time of a claim. This blog is not meant to get you the cheapest price for a medical malpractice policy in Michigan, but is designed to educate you on what questions to ask and how to better understand the pricing model.
- Not asking for all available credits – I once heard from an underwriter that most agents and policy holders do not ask for all credits that are available. For example, some carriers provide additional credit if you are a member of a medical society, have an EMR system, etc… If the carrier is not aware, they cannot add the credit.
- Fear of taking on risk – Many policyholders are risk adverse. However, if you reviewed their practice history it would clearly show that they could take on additional risk and save premium dollars (similar to high deductible health plans – HRA’s + HSA’s). If you are a solo provider or small group of physicians consider an indemnity only deductible. If you are a large group or health system discuss more sophisticated risk sharing models (rent-a-captive, risk retention groups, and other alternative risk strategies).
- Purchasing the wrong type of policy for your needs – in a previous blog, I discussed claims made policies in depth. Discuss what type of medical malpractice insurance policy you have in place with your risk advisor (or agent) and see if it still fits your needs and more importantly you future practice plans.
- Not providing loss history – Many carriers provide “Claims Free Credit,” or additional credit to those providers who have practice for a certain number of years without a claim. A common misconception is that this credit is only good for the time you are with that carrier. While it can be a bit cumbersome, obtain copies of your past loss history (fellowship years, prior employers, etc…). If you have practiced without a claim during these years, they often carry forward toward a “Claims Free Credit” with your new medical malpractice insurance company.
Ultimately, communication with your Risk Advisor (or insurance agent) is critical. Discuss what type of medical malpractice insurance policy is right for your needs today and have a strategy for the future. Agree on a goal and execute your plan.
Kelly Reed, LIC | 906.315.7227 | firstname.lastname@example.org