PracticeLink Magazine

FALL 2014

The career development quarterly for physicians of all specialties, PracticeLink Magazine provides readers with feature articles, compensation stats, helpful job search tips—as well as recruitment ads from organizations across the U.S.

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Page 18 of 103

FALL 2014 | 19 By MARCIA HORN NOYES Insurance: tails and types It's up to you to protect yourself and your estate when things go wrong. Y ou've trained long and hard to practice medicine. You now strive to provide the best care for your patients. However, accidents happen. And when they do, you must be prepared for the legal entanglements that can arise, sometimes even after your death. Medical malpractice defense attorney Elizabeth L.B. Greene, now a partner at Mirick O'Connell in Massachusetts, worked on a medical malpractice case fled against an estate almost 20 years ago. The physician, who had practiced for more than 50 years, had entered retirement prior to his death. After his pass- ing, a patient fled a medical malpractice claim against his estate. Even though the doctor had no prior notice of the claim, the patient's attorney fled within the applicable statute of limitations. Unfortunately, the doctor did not have tail insurance. Greene says if tail insurance had been in place at the time of his death, then the legal costs and the verdict against the physician would not have been borne by his estate nor impacted the administration of the estate. "In addition, the lack of tail insurance required the physician's family members to be more involved in the case than they would have been if a claims repre- sentative had been involved," explains Greene. Had the insurance been in place, the family would have still found the case to be a burden on top of their own personal loss. However, Greene says that the lack of tail insurance "had a more signifcant impact on [the family's] time and emotions." With many family and friends as physicians, Greene says she under- stands the challenges and pain that a medical malpractice claim can cause. "It often attacks physicians to the core of their being." Hospice and palliative medicine physician Steve Grabowski, M.D., of Golden, Colorado, attended a medical conference with a session on malpractice issues a few years ago. "The session presenter asked everyone in the audience who had been sued some- time in the past to please stand; almost everyone in the room stood up." Grabowski says he saw tears in Financial Fitness Tips for physicians from fnancial experts Understanding the various types of insurance available will give you peace of mind in k nowing that you are covered adequately. Continued

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