If you have decided to make a career in the home healthcare aide industry or set up a home healthcare aide agency, you already have a fair idea of how to set up your business. You know what kind of qualifications you need, or you must seek in your employees, and know what inherent qualities, such as compassion and patience, are needed to succeed in this field. However, many HHA agencies start out without a comprehensive insurance plan covering them, and this can prove to be a dangerous lapse.
Take a look at some facts that were outlined in a report by NERA Economic Consulting, commissioned by the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform.
- In the year 2008, small businesses in America paid up a total of over $105 billion towards tort liability.
- Small businesses absorbed about $35.6 billion of tort costs and paid from their funds, not through insurance.
- Medical malpractice costs plus other tort liability cost for small businesses amount to over $133.4 billion.
The fact is that no small business owner wants to think about being dragged into a lawsuit when they are just about to embark on the business, but this is not something that can be ignored. The potential costs are simply too high, and they can push your fledgling business to the brink of ruin. Remember that letting a claim go unchallenged is not a very good option for you either, since your inaction may be taken as an admission of guilt by potential/future clients. This could impair your future business drastically. Given the disastrous consequences that a lawsuit against your agency can have, it makes business sense for you to get insurance cover in place as one of your top priority items when you set up your HHA agency. This also true if you are setting up a non-medical HHA agency. In fact, take a look at this step by step guide to setting up such an HHA agency, and you will see insurance coverage listed here as one of the critical tasks to do.
Can liability insurance cover you effectively?
The answer is a resounding YES! A savvy business owner knows that insurance is a simple, effective way to protect the business financially. Legal issues tend to run up bills that can be huge, even if you can prove your innocence and do NOT have to pay damages. There are costs associated with fighting your lawsuit, remember, and without the right insurance in place, it is your business that absorbs all these costs. To prevent this, you need to opt for the right kind of insurance plans to cover all your bases. Take a look at what you need:
General liability insurance explained: This is broader base insurance that is often referred to as business liability insurance. For example, if your aide accidentally damages some medical equipment that is at the patient’s place when they are operating it, this insurance may kick in to cover any costs arising from legal claims made against you for property damage or bodily injuries resulting from your services or operations.
Malpractice liability explained: This insurance coverage kicks in when a claim is made against services you or your aide have provided. There may be patients or family members of patients alleging that you/ your aide were negligent in duties or there was a failure to perform services as claimed or that you gave wrong advice that led to some detriment to the patient. In any such situations where you are accused of a lapse in medical care that has led to some harm to the patient, your malpractice liability insurance helps cover the risk.
Knowing how your insurance plan protects your business helps you tackle legal claims with confidence, challenging allegations that are falsely made against you. Talk to your insurer and understand the many benefits that your insurance plan provides because this may be your lifesaver in a challenging situation with a client.