Why practice insurance is necessary
Arranging practice insurance can be a time-consuming exercise, and ensuring you have the right level of protection can be confusing. Practice insurance is necessary because it not only protects the physical building and the contents within, but also your gross revenue in the event of a material damage claim.
In addition, a policy should cover your liabilities to the public and your employees, as part of meeting your legal obligations as an employer. An all-encompassing practice insurance policy provides peace of mind.
What kind of concerns practices might have
Do I have the right level of cover?
It’s vital that you insure for the right level of cover, so that in the event of a claim, you are adequately protected. On the other hand, if you are insuring for too much, you may be paying more than you need to. It is good practice to complete an inventory of your practice contents to ensure that you have the right level of cover. Check that your annual fee income is correct and, if you own the building, that you are insuring on the rebuild value rather than the market value.
Do I have liability cover?
It is a legal requirement to have employer’s liability if you employ members of staff. A standard practice policy would typically provide £10,000,000 worth of cover under this section. There is also a duty of care to members of the public (your patients) which is also generally included. Limits can vary under this section, so it’s important that you check to make sure you have the right level of cover. Some NHS contracts may stipulate the level of cover they require you to have for public liability.
How can I minimise the risk of claims?
Good risk management is key to minimising the chance of claims. For example, look at whether you have the right security in place, such as window locks and door locks and, depending on your sums insured, an alarm installed. Minimising the risk of burst pipes in winter by lagging pipes or installing a water shut-off device can also help. Ensuring fridges used for drugs are in good working order is a good example of best practice.
Cost of insurance
Price is a factor when buying insurance, but so is having the right cover. Complete comparisons of the quotations you receive to ensure you are not comprising on cover for a price saving. Many providers can offer an instalment facility you help spread the cost.
How can Lloyd & Whyte help?
Practice insurance is available to BMA members through Lloyd & Whyte Ltd. With knowledgeable, qualified people, and a product that has been designed for GP practices, they can help reduce workload by doing the legwork for you.
With access to leading products and specialist know-how, Lloyd & Whyte advisors make insurance easy for BMA members, and can also offer a complimentary face-to-face insurance review at your practice with a regional account executive.
Lloyd & Whyte is the official insurance partner of the BMA. Find out more about practice insurance or call them on 01823 250580.