A specialized type of professional liability insurance, medical malpractice insurance provides coverage to physicians and other medical professionals for liability arising from disputed services that result in a patient’s injury or death. A majority of American doctors face at least one medical malpractice lawsuit in the course of their career.
Carrying this type of insurance is essential for physicians—and is required by law in most states. Other medical professionals who should consider this type of coverage include dentists, psychologists, pharmacists, optometrists, nurses and physical therapists, among others.
Options for purchasing medical malpractice insurance:
Depending on the location and nature of a medical practice, medical malpractice insurance can take several forms, including:
- An individual or group policy purchased from a traditional private insurer.
- An individual or group policy obtained through a medical risk retention group (RRG), a mutual organization of medical professionals organized to provide liability insurance.
- Coverage provided as part of a policy held by an employer, such as a hospital.
Medical professionals should seek insurance coverage for themselves as individuals, as well as for their business entity—e.g., corporation, partnership, limited liability company—and their employees.