Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company

News Update!


Risk Management Tips:  Communicating with Low Health Literacy Patients

Lack of health literacy can make effective communication with patients a challenge.  At stake may be inability to comply with treatment regimens, give informed consent and use medication properly.
>>Read More


Cell Phone Use Poses Significant Risks in Healthcare Settings

The personal use of cell phones poses a significant risk in healthcare settings as it may distract physicians and staff from the tasks at hand.  >>Read More


MLMIC Announces No Rate Increase for Physician Policyholders on July 1

MLMIC has released great news for physician policyholders and our chapter members who take advantage of this valuable membership benefit. The New York State Superintendent of Insurance has accepted MLMIC’s recommendation for rates to remain unchanged for the July 1, 2015 – July 1, 2016 policy year. 

In addition, the 5% dividend announced in April (for policyholders who were insured on May 1, 2014, and maintained continuous coverage through July 1) will be credited to invoices for the upcoming renewal period. This is MLMIC’s third consecutive year of dividend returns!  >>Read More


Better Communication During Care Transitions May Reduce Readmissions

Ineffective communication and transfer of patient information has been associated with medical errors, patient harm and patient dissatisfaction.  >>Read More


Consider Liability Risks Before Permitting Individuals to "Shadow" Physicians

Before responding to a request to allow a high school or college student shadow you at an office or facility, consider the medical liability and patient safety risks.  >>Read More


Special Edition of MLMIC's Dateline Publication - Spring 2015 Volume 14 Number 2

Featured articles include:  (1) Medical Identity Theft - The Crime That Can Kill and (2) Responding to Requests for Electronic Copies of Medical Records  >>Read More


5 Traits to Look for in Your Insurer's Claims Department

No medical professional ever wants to be named in a legal action. But if and when it happens, you’re going to have to rely heavily on your insurer’s claims department. The knowledge and expertise of staff is critical when it comes to professional claim handling and obtaining favorable outcomes in New York State.  Here are some of the insurer attributes that can make a difference to your claims:

  1. The insurer has the experience. How long has the insurer been handling complex professional liability claims in New York?
  2. The insurer has a proven process. When you report a new matter, how soon do claim professionals discuss your case and begin defending your interests? At what point does a representative meet with you to answer your questions, discuss your case, share ideas or walk through the complexities of New York’s legal system? Does the insurer seek your input and encourage you to be involved in the process?
  3. The interests of the insured come first. Sometimes, what’s best for an individual policyholder may be in direct conflict with the interest of investors, and in some claims departments examiners often answer to business people. In companies owned by policyholders (like a mutual insurance company), a committee of physicians often ensures that the interests of the policyholder take priority.
  4. The insurer has the right team in place. Does the insurer retain the services of specialized defense firms? Does the team have a solid record of successfully defending New York physicians, dentists, hospitals and healthcare facilities in professional liability action.
  5. The insurer is financially stable. If the insurer is not financially stable, your claims may not get paid. Some companies are undercapitalized and potentially place their insured’s personal assets at risk.

With MLMIC, you can be assured that we have these bases covered. We’ve been handling complex liability claims in New York since 1975, and the experience and specialization of our claims department offers our customers an advantage. We’re renowned throughout the professional liability community for our expertise and top-rated service.  Please contact us if you have any questions or would like to discuss our services further.


"Emergency Medical Services and Surprise Bills" Law Takes Effect in New York

The "Emergency Medical Services and Surprise Bills" law, effective March 31, 2015, impacts billing and reimbursement for some out-of-network healthcare services.  >>Read More


MLMIC Releases Proactive Risk Management Follow-Up Program VI

As part of MLMIC's ongoing commitment to helping physicians and other healthcare practitioners improve the quality of patient care and reduce potential liability exposure in their practices, a new online risk management CME program, Proactive Risk Management Follow-Up Program VI (Follow-Up VI), has been developed for MLMIC policyholders and is now available at MLMIC.com.

In this program, expert physicians, healthcare attorneys and MLMIC Claims and Risk Management representatives discuss issues in risk management currently affecting physicians, including liability risks related to the use of advertising, electronic medical records, and voice recognition software.  High-exposure liability claims associated with errors in diagnosis and strategies to prevent these claims are reviewed.  Challenging patient behaviors that can impact the physician-patient relationship are presented and recommendations are made to reduce potential liability exposure.  Lastly, Follow-Up VI addresses recent trends in back disorder claims, including findings from
the PIAA Data Sharing Project presented by their Director of Research and Risk Management.

In addition to its educational value, Follow-Up VI allows physicians to earn CME credit and eligibility to participate in the New York State excess medical malpractice insurance program.  For further information, contact MLMIC's Risk Management Department at (212) 576-9601.


5 Percent Dividend Announced for All MLMIC Policyholders!

MLMIC's Board of Directors recently approved a 5 percent dividend for all MLMIC policyholders insured as of May 1, 2015.  This dividend comes on the heels of the 7.5% special dividend that was recently distributed to policyholders.  The 2015 dividend will be issued by June 1 to dentists; and on July 1 to physicians, extenders, hospitals and other healthcare facilities that maintain continuous coverage through July 1.  >> Read More


MLMIC Declares 7.5% Special Dividend
MLMIC is pleased to announce a 7.5% Special Dividend for all of our policyholders!

MLMIC’s president, Dr. Robert Menotti, said that dividends “provide meaningful financial relief to our policyholders,” and that “they are an integral part of our mission to provide high-quality insurance at low long-term cost.”  Since inception, MLMIC has returned over $300 million in dividends to our policyholder owners.

To qualify for this 7.5% Special Dividend, policyholders must be insured by MLMIC on February 1, 2015. The dividend will be applied to policyholder accounts on March 1.  Questions? Contact Us today.


Understanding Dividends

Policyholder dividends are a direct way of providing financial relief to the policyholders of an insurance company.  >>Read More


Surprise Visits from Government Investigators and Agents

It can be quite unsettling to have a government investigator appear unannounced in your office demanding copies of patient records or even an interview with you or your office staff.  >>Read More


Study:  Medical Errors Drop When Doctors Communicate

Effective communication is imperative in ensuring patient safety, especially during patient handoffs.  >>Read More


New MLMIC CME Modules Available Online

The second series of MLMIC CME Modules are now available through MLMIC.com .  >>Read More


The Latest Advice In Practice Management


4 Strategies to Increase Patient Safety and Reduce Risk
In recognition of National Patient Safety Awareness Week, we encourage all our insureds to identify ways to improve patient safety and reduce risk.  >>Read More

Alternative to Certified Mail
Whenever you must send an important communication to a patient, it must be in writing and sent by means of a reliable delivery method.  In the past, many significant written communications, discharge letters, or warning letters to noncompliant patients would be sent to the patient by certified mail, return receipt requested.  The certified mail process requires a signature from the patient or another person who lives at the address, thus providing evidence that the commmunication was, in fact, received.Unfortunately, not only has the cost of certified mail dramatically increased, but ...  >>Read More

Update on Physician Assistant Prescribing Authority
The Spring 2014 Issue of Dateline discussed the rules governing the professional practice of physician assistants (PAs).  In the article Physician Assistants:  A Risk-Benefit Analysis, it was stated that PAs could not prescribe any Schedule II controlled substance, citing 10 NYCRR §94.2(e)(5) (page 3, footnote 10).  On February 26, 2014, a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was published in the New York State Register proposing to remove this restriction.  As of this writing…  >>Read More

 

Introducing MLMIC's  New  e-newsletter:
The MLMIC News Digest

Subscribe today, and each month MLMIC  will send you links to valuable insights and expert opinion on important liability issues.

Recent Topics Include:

Risk Management Tip of the Month:

Tip #10:  Managing Chronic Pain Patients
 
The Risk:  The Management of chronic pain, through the prescription of medication, poses challenges and risks to both the patient and the healthcare provider (physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner).  These risks include the potential for patient addiction, diversion, the possibility of overdose, and death, whether accidental or the result of suicide.  The provider's fear of the following risks may lead to inadequate treatment of the patient:

  • liability for failure to adequately treat pain;
  • liability for allegedly inappropriately prescribing controlled substances;
  • potential for civil charges being brought against a physician or other provider for the patient's diversion of narcotics and/or drug abuse or overdose; and
  • liability for failing to recognize a patient's addiction and/or diversion and to refer the patient for treatment


Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company (MLMIC) was formed in 1975, in cooperation with the Medical
Society of the State of New York (MSSNY).  It is a mutual professional liability insurance company, which
means that it is owned by the healthcare providers it insures. Headquartered in New York City, MLMIC has
field representatives throughout the State, as well as three regional offices located in Syracuse,
East Meadow, and the Albany area.


Management and direction of MLMIC is accomplished through a Board of Directors, comprised of physicians,
dentists, and hospital administrators.  Policyholders have full voting rights on management issues. MLMIC is
an active participant in the national organization, Physician Insurers Association of America (PIAA), and has
been a leading force in development of risk management programs and systems, cause of loss identification,
and patient safety education.                                         

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New York Chapter of the American College of Physicians
744 Broadway, Albany NY 12207
Tel: 518-427-0366
Fax: 518-427-1991
Email: info@nyacp.org