Indemnity insurance plans for doctors are considered as a vital part of the professional services. These insurance policies provide them financial coverage in case of litigation proceeded against them on the grounds of unprofessional discharge of their services, negligence, inaccurate advice given in professional capacity, etc.
Indemnity insurance for doctors has become more commonplace over the last few years considering the 112 such cases elevating to the Supreme Court.
Only 15% of the cases saw an outcome where medical negligence was proven on the part of the doctors. Even if not found guilty, such cases can tarnish the reputation of the medical professionals.
Thus for doctors, having an indemnity insurance policy in place is inevitable. Both reputation and finances can be severely hampered during such trials and tribulations.
Things to know about indemnity insurance plans
A number of leading insurance providers offer professional indemnity insurance for doctors. These policies come with specific points of coverage to help doctors stay financially protected during legal proceedings and numerous such similar incidents.
For instance, financers such as Bajaj Finserv offer Indemnity Insurance for Doctors with certain specific terms of coverage and exceptions.
Here are a few such coverage terms offered to help you get a better idea of how these insurance policies can help –
- Coverage against legal liabilities
The most vital coverage offered by such insurance policies is to manage expenses of legal proceedings. In India, litigation procedures in case of medical negligence are long-drawn and require substantial expenses.
Other than defence costs, a doctor may be charged with third-party damages, loss of documents, confidentiality breach, etc.
Legal expenses can amount to a substantial sum considering that such legal cases often carry a huge sum of penalty other than imprisonment.
For instance, as per IPC Section 304A, any individual causing the death of another due to a negligent act and not by sole intentions to achieve the same shall be punished with imprisonment terms of up to 2 years or a fine or both.
If the doctor in concern is charged with medical negligence which is the cause for the death of an individual, he/she will be charged under this section.
Medical negligence, in legal terms, is proven on the basis of 4 D’s – duty, dereliction or negligence, damages, and direct cause. If all these are proven in the court of law, the doctor in concern will be considered as guilty of medical negligence.
An insurance policy can provide doctors with the financial means to survive after such an allegation and the trial, guilty or not.
- Deductibles and sum assured
Indemnity insurance for doctors comes with deductibles. Other than the premium, a doctor needs to provide these deductibles to ensure the policy coverage. Deductibles can be simply explained as the funds that the insured has to pay to initiate disbursal of the claims.
For example, if a policy comes with a sum assured of Rs.10 lakh with deductibles of Rs.50,000, the doctor needs to pay the Rs.50,000 to benefit from the coverage.
Bajaj Finserv offers up to Rs.1 crore of coverage with their Indemnity Insurance Plan. The coverage amount will be decided based on an individual’s size of the venture, risks identified and budget.
- Claim redressal
Claim redressal should be considered specifically as a point of service offered by the financer. Top insurance policies come with easy claiming procedures. Note that they may or may not include deductibles.
Also, documents required will also vary between financers and policies alike. It is always wise to opt for financiers who offer the easiest claim redressal processes for speedy disbursal of the assured sum.
Professional indemnity insurance coverage typically comes with multiple situations requiring routine disbursal of the coverage, e.g. expenses of legal counsel. It is important to opt for a plan or rather a financer who can guarantee such to least hamper the court proceedings.
Opt for leading financiers and purchase professional indemnity insurance for doctors only after thoroughly reading the terms of coverage.
Such an insurance plan can help significantly in the event of medical negligence charges levelled against you. Although you can simply opt for loans for professionals to mitigate the financial crises, it is always advisable to consider insurance policy. Plan your finances wisely while considering your future professional prospects.