Life Insurance, Still Important, rates are low and, at times..so is the demand!

Life Insurance is still the best, most affordable method of protecting your family.  Term rates are more affordable then ever, insurance companies have innovative plans which lock in rates for many years, and the financial strength of the companies are solid.  However, statistics reveal that the insurance industry is in the middle of a 50 year record low for life insurance ownership.  The conventional wisdom,  the harsh reality which finds the industry in this situation is, that business owners and heads of household have other, more pressing priorities.   The reasons for the low purchases in life insurance most likely also stem from the fact that many heads of household are supported by other family members who would take over the family's needs in the event of a death.  Additionally, deaths from Influenza and Pneumonia as well as war are a small fraction of what they were in 1900.  There are also life needs which compete with Life Insurance:  In today's world,   ...
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Communication between physicians: Successful Planning and Patient Care.

The Doctors Insurance Agency is ...well sort of a single tasking agency,  which is to say we just focus on Healthcare liability risk management, risk transfer and personally and professionally protecting the physicians bringing their life's work to the many patients who need them. We are in Northern California, and we are quick to travel wherever we need to go in order to solve our physician's problems. Protecting your office with Office Overhead Insurance ensures that there are no communication errors between physicians when one of the doctors has to go out on claim.  A short term disability can throw an undue burden on to the practice, leaving thousands of expenses on to the physician partners remaining to pick up the slack.  With an Office Overhead Insurance policy, there is money available, from the insurance company to cover the disabled partner's share of the expenses,  share of the rent, part of the salary of the assistants, supplies and even to help fund the salary of a Locum Te ...
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Tort Reform, Claims Frequency

The Medical Liability Market still is soft, by most calculations and, there are factors popping up that will likely contribute to a rise in frequency in the coming months.  In an effort to position for growth when rates increase seemingly inevitably in the future months, some companies are lowering rates.  Additionally, there is renewed emphasis on e health record, Billing Errors & Omissions and ancillary provider liability insurance.  The combined action of hospitals purchasing physician practices, Pressure to peel away tort reforms and the increase of patients access due to Health Care Reforms are ushering in increases in claims.  Concurrent with an increase in the number of law suits, it is well documented that the average claim amount has increased by 5% each year.  And, rates continue to decline, year after year, net reductions approaching 30% from almost a decade ago.  The concern in the malpractice insurance industry is that very suddenly, there could be lower reserves ...
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Prescribing the right thing for Electronic Data and Administrative Billing,Disciplinary Issues.

Since the Centers for Medicare Services started the audits as an experiment in 2005, they are now permanently part of the healthcare reform landscape. The audit recovery process started as a demonstration project in Florida, California and New York, the states with the highest percentage of medicare.  The program worked nicely, so it was expanded to Mass, South Carolina and Arizona, Ultimately netting close to 700 Million in reimbursements, penalties, fees from discovering billing errors and abuses. A law in 2006, made these audits a permanent part of our government program of billing reviews. These Audits, the visits by the Recovery Audit Contractors seem like visits from people bent on taking the physician’s money away.  There are real abuses and mistakes, which justifies the program, and physicians should be prepared to respond. There should be a person within the medical group designated to respond and to follow the requests, guide the appeals and document the billing clearly defining ...
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Risk Management results in reduced malpractice premium.

The Doctors Insurance Agency can help you find the right patient safety, Risk Management Course.  The Doctors' Company is the nation's largest provider of Medical Malpractice Insurance for physicians and facilities.  And, Risk Management is a large part of the service that you get when you become a member of this fantastic company.  In a time when the individual physician premium is, in part, determined by the risk management program participation and online courses taken and hospital reimbursements are cut depending upon readmission rates for Cardio or Pneumonia cases in the elderly,  this is an integral part of selecting a medical malpractice Insurance Carrier. The Doctors Insurance Agency in California makes it a priority to listen to our physicians describe their prctices.  The past coverage gaps and past claims experiences are all parts of the underwriting decisions and rating.  Additionally, it is important to explain the alliances, affiliations with mid levels, medi,al di ...
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It is time to protect yourself against stolen patient records.

Data loss in the healthcare industry has become so prevalent that you can find a reported breach everyday in the news.  RED flag rules require notification, protocol and action to contain the damage. There are 46 State Laws on the books outlining responsibilities and imposing fines.  Companies that are victimized by a data breach run the risk of being non com.pliant.  It's not hard to comply, and there is work involved.  You should work with consultants to implement breach protocol and best practices.   Insurance to protect your healthcare practice is more affordable than it has been in the past, the terms are better than they have been in the past.  Property Insurance can even extend to failure in technology so that the loss of data is partially covered by the property insurance.  The average cost of an organization's data breach just increased 7% to 7.2 Million dollars, the cost per record for early responders to the data leaks is now $268 per record.  The insu ...
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Does your medical entity have proper insurance?

Our medical malpractice insurance agency,  The Doctors Insurance agency has been representing for 24 years.  THIS YEAR MEDICAL MALPRACTICE insurance claims naming the medical entity, surgery center or Imaging center are on the rise.  Even while claims experience against physicians is generally on the decline,  these claims are increasing.   The theory of entity, vicarious medical liability is becoming an accepted principle in directing and supervising helathcare providers.  Courts are holding medical groups liable for a portion of the claim, reasoning that the Owners, The directors and officers of the phsician group should have known that this doctor might hae ommitted some important detail of service or committed some negligent act.  The physicians affiliated with Anesthesia Groups, Med Spas, Imaging Centers and other ambulatory Surgery Centers should call us to at least discuss the limits in place insuring the facilities and entities with which they work. & ...
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What are we doing ‘selling’ insurance at a time when so many of us can obtain it online.

We are advocating, learning, listening and speaking for you, our clients.  Every day, our agents are working with physicians to properly define and represent their practice to underwriting.  This is to make sure that not only is the premium is appropriately competitive, in synch with this capital abundant market, to also make sure that the entire practice is insured to the extent that is necessary. Physicians are joining large organizations, forming alliances, buying and selling practices, there is not only the business of practicing medicine that incurs risk, but also the business off running a practice,  making decisions, acting appropriately fairly to partners and future partners.  We, at our insurance Agency in California can help you analyze it all, to represent you to the underwriters and ultimately to provide you the most competitive premium available to include all of the risk that rises to practices and administrators.  (yes, administrators can be included under the entity, ...
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Imaging Centers, Surgery Centers, MedSpas and Endoscopy Labs

Imaging Centers, Surgery Centers, Medical Spas and Endoscopy Labs,  all share the same thing in common: there are many ways to insure them.  You should have a separate limit, protecting the entity on its own.  The limits of the physicians should be protected from the liability and vicarious exposure that is presented to them from the multiple use facility.   This is to say that there are many physicians, there are employees and other contracted workers whom come in contact with these facilities.  If all of the physicians are in one medical group, then, the cost effective insurance solution is to simply add a separate limit to their policy, which is done by adding a percentage of premium to each physician.  The more flexible method if the physicians need to open the facility (and this goes for pathology labs as well) is to write a separate limit that is inclusive of the employees and independent contract (non MD personnel) whom work at the facility.  This way you are protec ...
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EMR and Social Media Medical Malpractice Liability Considerations:

Electronic Medical Records are eventually going to become incorporated into every medical practice. With this implementation of a practice’s electronic health record systems come additional risks.  The Doctors’ Insurance Agency represents The Doctors’ Company for  medical  malpractice insurance, and, thus, would like too shared the information available to manage risk and control the high cost of data breach. Each week, as an insured physician with The Doctors’ Company, you will have access to more studies and reviews of claims and information about new technologies. No where is this more prevalent than in the areas of electronic medical records and social media applications.  Practices now have electronic connections to labs, surgery centers, hospitals, imaging and endoscopy centers, these electronic connections open up opportunities to lose or leak the data.  Moreover, if patient harm results from lack of or incorrect information than the doctor and his / he ...
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