Global insurance brokerage and risk management firm Integro has launched an exclusive professional liability/errors and omissions insurance coverage product. It is designed to protect healthcare institutions with self-insured professional liability programs from claims handling exposures inherent in adjusting medical malpractice claims.
“We have seen a proliferation of litigation activity against healthcare clients and their claims staff,” said Ruth Kilduff, leader of Integro’s Healthcare practice. “The precipitating factor quite often is that an individual defendant may not have sufficient limits available. Such defendants may then bring a claim against the entity that handled the claim.”
The new product - with limits of up to $5 million in the aggregate - offers protection for healthcare entities and their claim staff against claims alleging bad faith, deceptive claims practices and failure/negligence in providing professional services of claims handling, adjusting and underwriting. It is underwritten by Cove Program Underwriters.
“This product has been designed to address growing exposures faced by healthcare entities self-insuring. In a sector that continues to see mergers and acquisition activity, the heightened exposure faced by those with in-house claims and underwriting functions increases,” said Scott Simmons of Cove Program Underwriters.
Healthcare entities at risk include those that are self-insured to some degree for professional liability, regardless of the form of the self-insurance; self-administering their claims and/or underwriting program; and acquisitive – because the merging of insurance programs may result in disjointed claims handling functions and philosophies and disparate limits.
Also at risk are those providing coverage for non-employed or third party physicians and clinicians. Such organizations may often be viewed by its insureds as a true insurance company rather than a self-insurance program and, therefore, are more susceptible to allegations of bad faith.
“Bad faith and negligent claims management claims are often highly complex and involve sophisticated issues,” Paul Fleming, managing principal, Integro Healthcare UK, noted. “Cove’s underwriters have specialized in similar products and exposures for more than 15 years, and provide the deep experience and expertise to resolve them expeditiously to clients’ benefit.”
Integro, Ruth Kilduff, US