Medical malpractice insurance, professional liability– these two concepts were not around when baby boomers were putting on suits and reporting to work. In recent years however, the medical profession has seen the rise of malpractice lawsuits against doctors, thanks to the many highly-publicized flops under the knife of famous cosmetic surgeons.
Today, malpractice insurance is a federal issue in the United States. Almost every doctor who practices carries malpractice insurance. Professional liability insurance coverage or malpractice insurance protects doctors and other healthcare professionals from losses when dissatisfied or unhappy patients sue them for one reason or another.
Malpractice, in the context of medical professions, involves negligence or the failure to do something another doctor would have done. Instances of malpractice would include failing to diagnose or incorrectly diagnosing a medical condition, not providing a patient with the appropriate medical care, or taking too long to treat an already diagnosed condition. Professional liability arises from the fact that professionals, not just doctors, are ethically bound by laws and by their professional code of conduct to uphold the standards of their practice. After all, doctors are sworn to save lives.
Is the whole concept of ethical professional practice a convention of recent generations then? Actually not. These professional and ethical standards have been around for centuries. The reason malpractice insurance, professional liability, and code of conduct are issues gaining front-page attention is because of the rise in number of frivolous lawsuits – legal action filed by people who would just like to try and make a quick buck. People have become sue-happy. And, the more doctors realize doctors realize this, the more they feel the need to protect themselves from these lawsuits.
So, if you’re a professional and you’re not carrying malpractice insurance, it’s high time you look around for providers and shop around for quotes. With protection, you’ll be in a better position to practice with hospital privileges.