Telemedicine allows physicians to provide remote services to patients. By offering diagnostics via video, doctors can treat a new population of patients who may be unable to visit the office or need immediate attention for a severe but not emergency-level problem.
The number of Americans trying out telemedicine services in recent years has shot up, with usage rising at a compound annual rate of 261% from 2015 to 2017. Researchers predict that the practice will become commonplace over the next decade, as technology improves and more physicians discover advantages of telehealth for older and immunocompromised adults.
As physicians become more comfortable with the practice, the industry will evolve to accommodate it. Telehealth malpractice insurance could help you with risk reduction if your hospital or practice has this service in place.
Is Telemedicine Covered by Insurance?
Yes, you can find telehealth malpractice insurance to protect yourself. However, you should not assume that your current policy includes this type of coverage — due to the relative novelty of telemedicine, many insurance companies have not yet folded it into their current offerings.
If you are not sure whether you have telemedicine coverage, Arthur J. Gallagher can advise you. We can study your policy and determine whether you are covered. You need to know whether you are protected before you begin providing this vital service. If you are not, then you need to act quickly to secure telemedicine insurance so you can offer your patients the top-notch medical care they need while not leaving yourself vulnerable to a problematic situation. Insurance concerns related to telemedicine include:
- Technology issues: If technology fails, you may have difficulty conveying advice to the patient, and that can lead to miscommunication and confusion
- Patient abandonment: It becomes easier to lose touch with a patient who does not reside locally and does not show up for telehealth appointments
- Medical licensure: While telehealth makes it possible to treat someone from anywhere, physicians must be licensed in the state where the patient resides
NOTE: Most states have relaxed their requirements during the COVID crisis and many carriers will follow suit. There are also corporate exemptions that allow businesses to have multi-state licensures that would not require the individuals to carry each state license.
Telemedicine Malpractice Insurance Cost
You want to find telemedicine malpractice insurance at a reasonable price. In some cases, you may be able to take advantage of discounts that come with bundling insurance costs.
Telemedicine can reduce costs for your patients, but because this is a newer area of health care, you may find this policy costs slightly more because of the uncertainties related to its practice. Currently, underwriters are continuously working to understand this service so they can set prices accordingly, and the better understood it is, the lower those prices will go. Prices could also go up if underwriters determine there is more risk.
Get a Quote on Telehealth Malpractice Insurance
Securing the insurance you desire for your practice will set your mind at ease. You need the protection malpractice insurance offers, and you want to continue to provide telemedicine services for everyone who needs them.
Arthur J. Gallagher can assist you. We have an experienced team of advisors who can help you compare quotes from different insurance companies. We want to find a policy that matches your needs with the protection you deserve. Contact Arthur J. Gallagher today to learn more or request a quote.