Do I need a Medispa (or med-spa) insurance policy? This is the most common question asked about malpractice insurance for medical spas. The answer is YES! Every medical spa should carry a medical malpractice insurance policy that provides defense and indemnity coverage in the event of a claim. Forget the thinking that the doctors policy will cover the medispa. In many cases there is little if any coverage afforded by a physician’s medical malpractice insurance policy. In many cases the policy will specifically exclude coverage for “outside” entities And consider who else needs to be covered? The medical director, nurses, aestheticians, physicians and owners (including the ownership corporation)ALL need to be covered for their performance of duties in connection with the medical spa. Why? They can ALL be named in a lawsuit alleging negligent treatment.
The structure of the medical spa is more than just coverage for a single doctor or practitioner. If an incident arises, who is the patient most likely to sue? Whose name is on the door? The medspa! The owners of the medspa along with the medical director are named in the lawsuit nearly 100 percent of the time. Yet, in most medical spas the majority of procedures are performed by the employed or contracted nurse practitioners, RN’s and estheticians. A request for coverage (e.g. the insurance application package) should include all employees and contractors who will be providing services at the facility, along with their credentialing information and certificates of training. Generally the medispa policy will extend coverage for ALL professional services performed on behalf of the medical spa for one set price (except on behalf of physicians and certain other medical providers). Employess/contractors can be easily added and deleted throughout the policy term when personnel changes occur.
The medspa insurance policy includes coverage for the medical director on an administrative basis – no professional liability coverage for direct patient care. The administrative duties of the medical director are to implement policies and procedures, provide practitioner oversight, define the scope of medical services and oversee quality assurance. In some medical spas the medical director also provides patient treatments. In this case, additional underwriting infromation is required and an additional premium is attributed to that professional liability exposure. Any MDs and DOs actually providing patient treatments will require additional premium.
The most common lawsuit filied against medical spa is related to laser hair removal treatments. Additionally, reactions to some facial treatments can give rise to lawsuits. Obviously, if the medical spa is providing cosmetic surgery such as liposuction the potential for a lawsuit increases dramatically. Medical spas are especially prone to allegations of negligence because often patients do not consider thatserious complications can and do occur during an aesthetic procedure. With the costs for these policies being so low, it is foolish to risk operating without coverage. The average cost for a medical spa malpractice insurance policy is approximately $7,500. The cost to defend even the most meritless lawsuit…in excess of $25,000.