Why it's Risky for ODs to Only Compare Price of Malpractice Insurance

April 28, 2023
Getting a competitive rate is important, but only looking at price can be risky. Instead of only comparing cost, make sure you pay attention to the key aspects of your malpractice insurance policy that will protect you from costly claims and allow you to practice with peace of mind.
Man signs insurance policy document

Choosing a malpractice policy is a critical task for all doctors of optometry. Getting a competitive rate is important, but only looking at price can be risky. Instead of only comparing cost, make sure you pay attention to the key aspects of your malpractice insurance policy that will protect you from costly claims and allow you to practice with peace of mind: scope of coverage, policy portability, and the expertise and customer service of the provider.

Not all malpractice policies are created equal. When choosing a malpractice insurance policy, it is essential that a doctor of optometry ensures the policy they choose matches up to the treatment they provide—there’s no guarantee that the procedures you perform on a daily basis will be covered under all malpractice policies. Most policies include exclusions, which outline instances in which a provider would not cover claims. It’s important to take the time to identify any potential gaps in your malpractice coverage. If you need help identifying exclusions in your policy, consider a policy review— a free benefit for AOA members.

The portability of a malpractice policy also matters. Some policies are written to only cover work done directly for the employer who owns the policy and to tasks specifically listed in one’s job description. If you work in multiple practices or volunteer in a clinic, for instance, you may require additional coverage to protect you outside the scope of your employer-provided coverage.

Finally, customer service and industry knowledge should be an essential part of your insurance provider. Your provider’s customer service department should be able to answer common questions that optometrists would have regarding their policy. Choosing an insurance provider that has a background working with optometric professionals ensures that your insurance company is up to date on changes in the profession, scope of practice coverage, and has experience dealing with prior cases involving optometry. It’s also important to have easy access to insurance documents, including your certificate of insurance.

AOA members can submit their current malpractice insurance policy from any insurance provider for a complimentary malpractice insurance policy review from AOAExcel’s endorsed malpractice insurance provider, Lockton Affinity. Doctors of optometry have relied on Lockton Affinity for over ten years to provide insurance coverage tailor made for optometrists and their practices. The Lockton Affinity malpractice insurance has multiple benefits that may be difficult to find elsewhere, including guaranteed full-scope coverage that automatically expands with your state’s scope of practice and a customer service department trained to understand and answer questions specific to the field of optometry. Learn more about malpractice insurance and obtain a Quick Quote in seconds.

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