MEDICAL MALPRACTICE INSURANCE
Malpractice insurance is professional liability insurance that doctors, dentist, nurses, and other medical professionals must carry that will pay a patient for wrongful or neglectful practices when the outcome causes bodily injury to the patient or death of the patient. This insurance is very expensive and in most states it is a legal responsibility. However, in the state of Florida that is not always the case.
In Florida there are certain situations where a doctor can describe himself as a “part time” doctor and he is not required to carry malpractice insurance. He does have to have a line of credit but the amount is substantially lower than a doctor must carry in a hospital. He also must put up a sign in his lobby. The sign does not have to be pointed out to the patient neither does he have to acknowledge that he saw or read the sign. It simply must be there somewhere.
This may not sound like a big issue at face value, but consider this. If you are in an accident caused by a doctor driving an automobile that kills someone in your family and seriously injures you; you are going to be compensated for the death of your family member, for medical bills, lost wages and even for pain and suffering. Why? Because we have laws that state you must have insurance to protect people from accidents you have while operating a vehicle. Now consider that same doctor can perform surgery on you and not have insurance to cover you if he makes a mistake.
Attorneys in Florida have a good record of suing doctors and medical professionals who choose to conduct business without malpractice insurance. Most attorneys take cases concerning uninsured doctors in Florida on a contingency basis. This means they do not get paid unless they collect. This also means they front all the expenses involved in legal action against the doctors. If an attorney agrees to a case for damages against a doctor in Florida, he feels he has an excellent chance of winning.
Suing a doctor is not just filing a case. The attorney could be out thousands of dollars before settling or going to trial. He must obtain medical records, copies of x-rays, MRI’s and scans. He must have professional medical professionals examine the patient and verify that the injury was caused by the neglect or unintentional act of the doctor. The time involved is a major expense as well. All these things must be done with-in two years of the injury according to state laws.
While there are good doctors in the state of Florida and most carry malpractice insurance, it is wise to know who you are dealing with before you choose a doctor for any procedure. If you are unsure, ask the doctor if he carries the insurance. It is simply good business to be covered and it is wise to know you have a doctor that feels that your health merits such coverage.