Examining liability gaps for allied healthcare businesses

By Eric Paynter, president, healthcare at The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. | March 15, 2021

This post is part of a series sponsored by The Hanover Insurance Group.

General and professional liability coverage is a key component of insurance protection for allied healthcare businesses. However, healthcare organizations may be unaware of common liability coverage gaps that exist for many healthcare professionals including nurses, technicians and health aides.

Consider these scenarios

What happens if a patient receives the incorrect dosage of medication from a nurse at a healthcare facility? Or, imagine that a business faces an allegation that a health aide abused a patient in the facility’s care. How would your client’s current general and professional liability coverage respond?

If allied healthcare professionals aren’t sufficiently covered by their general and professional liability policies, the facility could be forced to pay out of pocket for judgments or settlements against them. That’s why it’s important for allied healthcare businesses to be educated about the risks that may arise from coverage gaps related to general and professional liability to help ensure they have the proper protection in place for their businesses.

Closing coverage gaps for allied healthcare

  • Coverage for licensed healthcare practitioners – Many allied healthcare organizations depend on the individual physicians’ malpractice coverage for professional liability coverage, but that coverage oftentimes does not extend to technicians, nurses, health aides, medical assistants and others providing services, such as mobile diagnostics or prescription medication administration.

In addition, physicians’ malpractice coverage does not always provide protection for lawsuits against the actual business entity. Hanover Allied Healthcare Advantage offers broad professional liability coverage for allied healthcare organizations, including employees and sub-contractors, to help close those coverage gaps. In addition, The Hanover provides vicarious liability coverage for contracted and/or employed physicians.

  • Abuse and molestation exclusions – Professional liability policies often have exclusions for claims related to abuse and molestation. In addition, an allied healthcare worker may not be considered an insured under a general liability policy. This may create a coverage gap for allied healthcare organizations. With Hanover Allied Healthcare Advantage, coverage can be extended to explicitly include abuse and molestation coverage to help protect allied healthcare organizations and facilities from abuse and molestation claims against their allied healthcare workers.

Developed by healthcare experts, Hanover Healthcare Advantage includes strong general and professional liability coverage designed to help eliminate these types of common coverage gaps. This seamless solution for general liability and professional liability can greatly reduce the potential coverage gaps that can arise when these policies are placed with different carriers — and as a result, help mitigate potential E&O claims against your agency if your allied healthcare client ends up being underinsured for a claim.

For more information about The Hanover’s allied healthcare offerings, visit the healthcare page on hanover.com.

About Eric Paynter, president, healthcare at The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc.

Eric joined The Hanover in 2014, as assistant vice president of allied healthcare, bringing more than 20 years of professional liability underwriting experience. Today, he serves as president of the company’s healthcare business, where he is responsible for The Hanover’s portfolio of healthcare products, including its allied healthcare, eldercare and providers books of business.

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