Your medical indemnity insurance questions answered

This news post contains some general answers to common questions we get from Doctors regarding medical malpractice insurance.

Why would a doctor working in the public sector obtain their own personal medical malpractice insurance ?

Whilst many doctors in the public sector may be indemnified by their employer for Civil claims arising from their work, they may not be covered for legal assistance should they need help with a Regulatory matter and need to appear before one of the Regulators.  This can be common and hence the insurance can be valuable in such a situation.  This is one of many reasons that some Doctors take out additional coverage.

What are common factors that affect my own price for medical indemnity insurance as a Doctor ?

Each insurer may allow for different factors.  And an insurer may change their rating methodology over time.  Some factors we have seen used by insurers include, but are not limited to :

  1. How long you have been working
  2. Your past claims history – whether it be Civil claims, Regulatory claims or other claims
  3. Your specialty and type of work you do
  4. Your private sector level of billings – both current, past, and expected in the future
  5. Your age
  6. Your gender
  7. ….and several others……

What are common factors that generally affect prices for medical indemnity insurance  ?

Some common factors that may influence prices charged by insurers for Doctors malpractice insurance could unclude :

  1. The level of interest rates and expected earnings on the insurer’s assets. When interest rates are low then insurers will need to charge higher premiums, all things being equal
  2. The level of Government financial support.  In the past, the Government has offered support payments to this sector but it is expected that these will phase down over time and this will increase prices.
  3. The frequency of claims.  How many claims are brought against the insurer for Civil matters, Regulatory matters and other matters.  For example, their may be an increase in actions brought against doctors by various legal groups.
  4. The average size of the claims paid by the insurer.  These could be impacted by various forms of inflation (eg for legal fees or compensatory awards) and the severity of claims.
  5. The cost of reinsurance.  Many insurers will in turn pass on some of their insurance risks to Global Reinsurers.  They will need to pay a premium to these reinsurers and the cost of this reinsurance can rise and fall like any other cost of the insurer.
  6. ….and several others such as how much capital each insurer must hold as determined by regulations.

Experien General Insurance Services (Experien) is a national insurance brokerage firm. We help many doctors in the private sector with their medical indemnity insurance, and we give Doctors the valuable alternative to dealing directly (on their own) with insurers. We research the market to help find better coverage, pricing or other factors.  If you engage us for a review, then we will not charge you if don’t decide to use us any further.  A review is complimentary and without any obligations.

General advice on this website has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on the advice, consider its appropriateness. Consider our disclosure documents, which include our FSG and each insurer’s Product Disclosure Statements (PDS) for insurance products.Please click here for our Financial Services Guide, which includes important regulatory disclosures regarding our license, remuneration and complaints handling.