Emergency Preparedness and Allied Medical Insurance

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently finalized rules to establish consistent emergency preparedness requirements for health care providers participating in Medicare and Medicaid. The purpose of the new rules was an attempt to increase patient safety during emergencies and establish a more coordinated response to natural and man-made disasters. These rules are being put into place as a way to better serve and protect patients in the event that a major disaster makes it necessary to evacuate healthcare facilities during an emergency using proper planning.

The effective date will be November 16th of this year and the implementation date will be Nov. 16, 2017. These new rules will require certain participating providers and suppliers, among them allied medical professionals, to plan for disasters. It will also require them to coordinate with federal, state, tribal, regional and local emergency preparedness systems to ensure that facilities are adequately prepared to meet the needs of their patients during disasters and emergency situations. Some patients may see situations like this and look to place blame upon healthcare providers. Allied medical insurance also helps your clients under threat of lawsuit.

Many steps taken to ensure emergency preparedness

There have been quite a few steps taken over the past 15 years to increase in the world of healthcare and disaster preparedness. There was the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Act (PAHPA) in March of 2013, which led to the creation of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR).

Prior to this, lawmakers created the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP), which took effect in July of 2012. These laws are some of the most significant shifts in institutionalized healthcare preparedness and emergency response since the year 2000. The currently proposed Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rule on healthcare preparedness is yet another way of making strides in patient safety.

There’s no doubt that building resilience in healthcare delivery and anticipating problems before they occur is critical to creating resilient and thriving communities for patients, physicians, and healthcare providers alike. This is why allied medical insurance, and laws protecting and aiding patients in disaster situations are so necessary. The challenge is, as always, for healthcare providers to figure out how to navigate the new requirements to support the necessary level of planning and preparation.

Lawsuits and Nurses Malpractice Insurance

Nurses are responsible for the care and safety of their patients. Unfortunately, in these types of situations, a patient may claim that neglect or abuse occurred at the hands of their caregiver, and this could swing the burden of proof that no wrongdoing actually happened on the part of the nurse. These types of accusations often occur at nursing homes where nurses are often isolated with patients. A patient suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s may actually believe something bad has happened to them when that is not the actual case.

Nurses need to carry nurses malpractice insurance, either through their employer or have their own personal policy to combat such allegations. This is helpful to defend against lawsuits in the event the family of a resident or a patient (in the case of a hospital) feels that they became the victim of abuse, or been taken advantage of financially or otherwise.

Accusations, even false ones, often bear weight

The stress of a hospital or nursing home establishment can have an adverse effect on a caregiver. As elderly citizens become more physically frail, they’re less able to stand up to bullying or fight back if attacked when such issues become prevalent. Such acts are viewed as criminally negligent at their worst, and if proven, can lead to costly judgments against the accused. Mental or physical ailments may make many patients of all ages more trying companions for those responsible for providing them with care. More than half a million reports of abuse are reported to authorities every year, while many more cases may go unreported.

Physical abuse

Victims and their families often report physical abuse or the use of force against a patient that results in physical pain, injury, or impairment. Such abuse includes physical assaults, such as hitting or shoving, inappropriate use of, or dispensing of drugs, harmful use of restraints on patients, or confinement for unusually long lengths of time. Such behavior is intolerable and there is a need for more stringent observation of nurses providing assistance to patients deemed difficult to care for.

Emotional abuse      

In the case of emotional or psychological abuse, nurses may be speaking to or treating a patient in ways that may cause emotional pain or distress. Verbal forms of emotional abuse include intimidation through yelling or threats, humiliation and ridicule, or even nonverbal psychological abuse, such as ignoring any requests or needs as expressed by the patient, isolating them from friends or activities, or terrorizing or menacing them. Such accusations, whether they’re warranted or not, will usually need a defense. Having nurses malpractice insurance can provide your client with the necessary defense that can threaten a career, and create a serious financial burden.

Accidents and Mistakes Factor Into Nursing Home Insurance Rates

The main focus of nursing homes is to provide the highest quality of life for the residents living there. But from time to time situations arise where injuries, often unintentional, end up causing severe pain for the injured party and may require lengthy rehabilitation. The need for liability insurance for nursing homes is crucial, and preventing injuries from occurring can help to reduce nursing home insurance rates.

Attendants and nurses must be extra careful with regards to the services they perform for their residents. But when working with frail individuals, often in poor health, it can result in issues that will need to be addressed. Having this valuable coverage covers medical costs and any settlements brought against the doctors and staff. Here are a couple of the common claims normally associated with this industry that having a professional liability policy will help cover when purchased alongside other insurance policies.

Accidental injuries to residents

Many patients will require assistance getting in and of their beds or wheelchairs. Lifting a patient multiple times a day can easily result in accidents occurring, even though a patient may be receiving the utmost care. Even cautious staff members can have an occurrence where a resident winds up suffering an injury. An event of this type can spur lawsuits against a nursing home, and owners must be ready to defend the actions of their staff.

Medication errors are cause for alarm

Nurses operating within nursing homes usually have several patients that they care for daily, so there may be concerns when it comes time to dispense medication. Since each patient will more than likely require different medications, and at different dosages, nurses must be well organized. If the wrong medicine or wrong dosage is accidentally given to a patient, the results can have serious, even fatal, consequences.

These sorts of mistakes unfortunately do happen. For example, if a staff member at a nursing home mistakenly gives an Alzheimer’s patient the wrong drug for issues with their central nervous system, this could result in his or her blood pressure dropping so significantly that it results in the patient dying.

These are common risks and exposures that all medical personnel must be cognizant of, and are best handled by owners having liability insurance for nursing homes. Brokers who handle this line of business should look into ways that their clients can save on nursing home insurance rates.

Protecting Your Interests and General Liability Insurance in Florida

No business owner who understands that when a liability issue arises, no matter how much money you save by not carrying the right amount of insurance, the end result is that you’ve placed your business at risk, and quite possibly your personal finances as well. General liability insurance protects your business from claims by any person or business’s claims of bodily injury, along with any associated medical costs and property damage. Your business should not be treated like a casino, because you can’t afford to take that gamble.

Unfortunately businesses are being sued all of the time for things like negligence, libel, slander, property damage, bodily injury, and copyright infringement among other things. And businesses can even be sued in instances when they’ve done nothing wrong. One of the best ways to avoid a lawsuit is to run the safest operations possible, but that still doesn’t mean that an accident or some form of negligence isn’t likely to take place. This is why smart business owners make a point of purchasing general liability insurance in Florida as soon as they are up and running.

Improve safety and reduce risk

Running a safe business is the best type of risk management practice that money can buy. Conducting safety meetings, discussing past issues and finding solutions moving forward will reduce the number of accidents and errors, which is a type of insurance you don’t necessarily have to pay for. Make sure that when an incident occurs, it is fully investigated and documented. This way, you’re likely to avoid a repeat of the issue, because generally people learn from their mistakes.

Things covered by a commercial general liability policy (CGL)

General liability insurance offers some of the broadest business insurance coverage money can buy. It may be included in a business owner’s policy (BOP) or is also available as stand-alone coverage. A few of the risks a business could face that a CGL helps to protect against are bodily injury or property damage, reputational harm, advertising errors, medical payments, and any damages to the premises you are currently occupying. You also have an option to add a business entity or other individual parties to your general liability insurance in Florida, so speak to an agent about coverage options today.

Cyber Threats and Data Breach Insurance Coverage

Companies you represent that face an ever-increasing threat of a cyber attack need to take the necessary steps to minimize their risks. There are several ways in which they can safeguard their servers, computers and other technological gadgets against such threats, as well as understand exactly how to respond to a cyber breach quickly and efficiently.

In order to alleviate concerns they should take the obvious approach and purchase data breach insurance coverage. When it comes to eliminating threats throughout the organization, security must reach beyond the IT department. The company must evaluate employee exit strategies (HR), remote project protocol, on site (and off-site) data storage practices, and use the information to establish and enforce new policies and procedures to prevent future occurrences.

An ounce of prevention

It is the responsibility of each individual organization to take steps to address data security threats. They then need to disseminate this plan throughout management to ensure everyone knows what to do in the event of a breach. They should create a security team dedicated to ensuring that the same standards for data security are applied regardless of location, by ensuring security and authentication software is installed on mobile devices and kept up-to-date, and providing adequate training and technical support for mobile workers.

Keeping current with security software updates will be a useful deterrent to hackers. After all, it’s a lot easier to go after information that doesn’t have the tightest security money can buy. It’s important to define your security requirements with vendors and third-party service providers. They may be required to maintain appropriate security measures in compliance with certain state and federal regulations. Ensure that your organization maintains control of data at all times, especially with offshore data storage or services.

While the majority of state statutes require “notification only” if a breach compromises unencrypted personal information, professionals have been known to break encryption codes without much difficulty in a lot of cases. Encrypting data in transit (and at rest) is a best practice, but, when used alone, it can give your client a false sense of security.

When it comes to data breaches, the risk is simply too high, from the costs of notification to the loss of customer loyalty. Help your clients make the right choice and invest in data breach insurance coverage, it’s their best line of defense after an attack occurs.

How to Renew Your Prescription Without Seeing Your Doctor

 Are you tired of battling long lines at your local pharmacy every time you need to pick up one your medications? If so, you should consider renewing your medical prescription online. This easy to use method of telehealth will allow you to refill your prescriptions without driving to your pharmacy, saving you time and money.

 Create an Account

 If you are ready to take advantage of the benefits of filling your prescriptions online, you must first create an account. Any refill site will require you to create a member account with a username and password. Once you have created your account, you can add any number of pharmacies to your account. The information needed to refill your prescriptions will then be added to your account, giving you the freedom to refill your prescriptions online, through phone, or even through video.

 Delivery Options

 When you log into your account with your online refill site, you will have several options for delivery. These may include:

  • Pick up at your local pharmacy
  • Shipped to your home
  • Shipped to your work

However, it is important to note that not all online pharmacies will refill and ship all prescriptions. Medications that are deemed as potentially harmful or addictive cannot be filled online due to regulations from the DEA.

Renewing your medical prescription online can be very beneficial in saving you extra energy and time. By providing home delivery across the United States, these online refill sites can ship your prescriptions to you even when you are on a business trip or vacation.