The following is provided by the Society’s endorsed medical liability insurer, the physician–owned Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company.
A lot of change is occurring in healthcare today, which can increase costs and/or lower reimbursements. As the leading professional liability insurer of physicians, hospitals and dentists in New York State, we know that this can put pressure on our insureds to manage the cost of their professional liability insurance. There are several things you can do to prudently manage the cost of your professional liability insurance:
- See if you qualify for our claims–free discount. MLMIC offers a 7.5 per cent discount for physicians that have continuously been in practice for a minimum of five years and have no open or closed claims within the past five years. About half of our insured physicians currently receive this discount. Some that haven’t received it may soon qualify. Others that meet the criteria and are currently not insured by us could qualify for the discount if they became insured by MLMIC. For more information, please visit the Underwriting section of MLMIC.com.
- Take full advantage of MLMIC’s online risk management course. We offer an online risk management course that can be completed in just a few hours from a home or office computer. It offers CME credits and a five percent premium discount upon successful completion. Many physicians take advantage of this course, but some do not. For more information, please visit the Risk Management section of MLMIC.com.
- Request a risk management survey for your group. MLMIC has a team of risk management professionals that works with its insureds to identify causes of loss and ways to mitigate them. This can help lower professional liability insurance costs over time. For more information, please visit the Risk Management section of MLMIC.com.
- Be wary of professional liability insurance quotes that are materially lower than your current premium. This can occur when the proposed coverage is not as comprehensive as your existing coverage. For example, switching coverage from occurrence to claims made initially triggers a substantial reduction in premium, but it may also create the need for tail coverage when the policy is cancelled. If you are comfortable with this, we can make this switch for you at MLMIC. We stand ready to help you compare quotes, explain the key differences, and discuss coverage options, if desired. For more information, please visit the Underwriting section of MLMIC.com.
- Monitor the financial condition of your insurer. If the insurer is weak, they may have difficulty honoring their policyholder obligations. Some insurers may not be protected by the New York State guaranty fund, which protects insureds in the event of an insurer’s insolvency. Also, strong insurers are better able to reduce rates or declare dividends when actuarially indicated. Financial statement information is often available on insurer websites (please visit the About Us section of MLMIC.com). It also may be obtained independently from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners at www.naic.org.
MLMIC recognizes that change can present challenges and opportunities. As a mutual insurer, we are committed to meeting the professional liability insurance needs of our policyholder owners, as we have since our founding in 1975. If you have specific questions, please contact Gary Andelora at (716) 648–5923.