Physicians Insurance is pleased to introduce our new Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage!
Due to industry trends such as physician burnout, staffing shortages, and supply-chain issues, medical errors are on the rise and increasingly leading to criminal medical negligence and alleged medical errors as seen in recent high-profile cases.   Compounding the situation is the potential for criminal state claims arising out of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision and subsequent state attempts to criminalize healthcare procedures that have long been the professionally accepted standard of care. This creates additional uncertainty and confusion in the courts. Unfortunately, medical professional and hospital liability policies typically exclude coverage for criminal actions. So how can healthcare professionals ensure that they’re protected and have the support they need, when they need it most?
At Physicians Insurance, we’re working to meet these challenges head-on and provide more comprehensive solutions. To this end, we are pleased to announce the launch of our Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage, which enhances our professional liability insurance for physicians and hospitals to include defense costs incurred in response to criminal allegations arising from patient care.
With this coverage, we are bridging a gap in coverage to better protect healthcare professionals and defend good medicine.
Policyholders may opt out of coverage by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on this endorsement, please contact your broker or underwriter and/or reference the below FAQ.
Physicians Insurance Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage is a new endorsement that enhances our professional liability insurance for physicians and hospitals to include defense costs incurred in response to criminal allegations arising in connection with patient care. The limits are $250,000 per insured per criminal action and $250,000 aggregate for all insureds.
Due to industry trends such as physician burnout, staffing shortages, and supply chain issues, medical errors are on the rise. And emerging from this is an increase in risk for criminal medical negligence and alleged medical errors as we have seen in recent high-profile cases.  Compounding the situation is the potential for criminal state claims arising out of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision. As a result, there has been an increase in uncertainty and confusion in the courts. Our endorsement helps bridge the gap in coverage for healthcare professionals in this challenging environment. Physicians Insurance believes that healthcare professionals are entitled to defense until proven guilty.
Physicians Insurance Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage is provided to better support healthcare professionals amid today’s changing professional liability trends and recent changes in law that have created circumstances in which physicians and other healthcare professionals may face criminal liability for doing their jobs. However, if an individual is found guilty and has exhausted their appeal rights on the issue of guilt, further reimbursement will not be made, and Physicians Insurance will retain the right to recover any funds already paid.
Our Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage supplements any other coverages purchased under a medical professional liability or hospital liability policy. Civil suits and criminal proceedings are handled separately and follow different procedural rules and proceedings—even if both arise in connection with the same set of facts. The coverage limitations available under the underlying policy will remain available for the civil liability suit, and the separate limitations under the Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage endorsement will remain available for the criminal proceeding.
Our Criminal Defense Reimbursement Coverage endorsement will be automatically added to your renewal starting January 1, 2023. This endorsement is provided at $150 per year for solo policies, $2,400 for corporate policies with entity limit, and $4,000 for hospital liability policies. All are subject to state regulatory approvals.