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Optometrist Malpractice Insurance

Working in the medical field can be a risky endeavour. People rely on medical professionals to provide quality care that cures, or at least alleviates, physical suffering. Most of the time, medical professionals practice with confidence and skill, but occasionally something goes awry. It is these times when medical malpractice insurance becomes of paramount importance.

Medical malpractice occurs when a health care professional fails to provide services that measure up to the accepted standard of care. Whether committed by act or omission, malpractice lawsuits can endanger both the reputation and the livelihood of medical professionals. To help them meet the sometimes unexpected challenges of malpractice charges, most health care providers will purchase an insurance policy which covers them in the event of an accusation of malpractice.

Optometrist Malpractice Insurance Tips

The per-incident amount allowance should always be high. In addition to coverage for litigation expenses, this allowance amount also provides coverage for the patient's medical expenses or property damage named in the lawsuit. It is often difficult to determine how extensive damages may be. For example, if an accident from the optometrist's negligence blinded a patient in one eye, the award that patient would receive may be close to $1 million. If this were the case, the optometrist would likely have to pay out-of-pocket for their litigation and other fees.

Having ample optometrist malpractice insurance means choosing a high per-incident allowance and high aggregate amount. Keep in mind that while the aggregate amount may be much more than the per-incident, regardless of whether there is only one incident or none, the difference of the aggregate and per-incident amounts cannot be awarded to an incident that has exceeded its limit.

Optometrist Malpractice Insurance - How to Lower Costs?

Prices for these policies vary greatly. The state an optometrist lives and practices in is one of the key factors in determining policy pricing. Another factor is claims history. Optometrists who have multiple past claims often are assigned a much higher rate.

One of the best ways to get a lower cost for optometrist malpractice insurance is to join a national or state-based association for optometrists. Most association members are offered discounted rates by major malpractice insurance providers. Optometrists who are offered insurance from their company of employment should review the policy and determine if it is sufficient. In most cases, employer insurance is designed to give the employer ultimate protection and the optometrist employee limited protection. Personal policies always have the most sufficient coverage and are often worth the extra money.

Last modified: May 15, 2011