Importance of Professional Indemnity Insurance for doctors

Doctors used to be revered in the earlier times in India. Even today the importance of a doctor can never be neglected. However, even doctors are human, and they can commit errors and mistakes. With the evolution of law, such negligence and error of judgments can be costly.

As a professional doctor, it is not your motive to hurt any of your patients physically or financially. But situations may arrive where a major decision has to be taken quickly and may lead to losses for the patient. As a medical practitioner, this makes you liable for the full or part of the loss suffered by the patient.

Again, as a professional, your practice should not be affected by one or two imperfections of decisions. Therefore, a professional indemnity insurance tries to cover your profession from such financial setbacks.

Why do you need Professional Indemnity Insurance?

According to a recently published study, legal proceedings accusing doctors of negligence have seen a rise of 400% in the Supreme Court. Although, only about 10- 15% of the cases have seen doctors being found guilty, the remaining 85% medicos none the less had to incur the cost of defending themselves.

Professional Indemnity insurance would take care of such expenses, without denting your pocket. Also, understand that the insurance will not cover the costs if an insured doctor is found guilty of criminal misconduct, or deliberate negligence.

Uncertain Penalty Amounts

There is no formula to estimate appropriate penalty in case a patient loses a limb or an organ. Thus the cost doctors can be sued for, can be extremely exorbitant at times. Therefore, doctors need special insurance so that they can safeguard themselves financially from such penalties and legal costs when they are sued by disgruntled patients.

Other Medical Professionals

Many insurance providers provide protection schemes to doctors to protect them in their practice. For a healthcare establishment, indemnity insurance plan for nurses and technical staff is also necessary. Liability Insurance for other Professionals is also available. A hospital can also insure itself and its practitioners, staff, nurses, etc. under an umbrella policy.

Conditions for Indemnification

In any case, the doctor’s professional indemnity insurance scheme traditionally requires following conditions to be fulfilled to indemnify the loss to the doctor:

  • The loss to victim is not an outcome of willful neglect
  • The loss is due to unplanned errors and omissions by the doctor
  • Legal liability arising because of bodily injury or death caused by breach of professional duty by:
    • The insured doctor
    • The support staff (in case of hospitals if insured)
    • Other officials or instruments involved in the medical activity if covered
  • Defense costs, fees and expenses anywhere in India in accordance with Indian Law

What to Expect from Doctor’s Professional Indemnity Cover?

This policy as seen already covers claims made by the patients for negligence or wrong treatment or accidents are mostly covered. It also offers to cover the costs of litigation, court fees, and settlements.

Some Exclusions:

  • Doesn’t cover criminal acts, duplicity, penalties or punitive damages.
  • Insolvency of the insured
  • Loss of goodwill, private damages is not covered

Doctors are life savers but even a life saver can sometimes commit a mistake which can affect anybody’s life, and reason can be completely unintentional. Anybody can make mistakes, but a doctor’s mistake can cause a lot of implications. Though, while treatment, a physician’s motive is always to make sure that the patient gets better and he is paid to do that but errors can happen anywhere.

Now, where to get complete information about this policy and buy it.

The best way to save time and make a qualified decision is to connect with insurance brokers, who can provide comparable quotes from multiple insurers. SecureNow is one such insurance aggregator which offers all the information needed to make a decision, additional services to complete paperwork and keep track of your insurance later.

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