insurance for health departments

assessing their needs

insurance for health departments

Westwood will work with you to ensure your health department clients have the best insurance coverage for every threat they could face.

Health departments play a vital role in safeguarding public health and well-being. Commercial insurance agents working with health departments need to be aware of the unique challenges they face to help them obtain the appropriate insurance coverage. Some key issues to consider include:

  1. Regulatory Compliance: Health departments must adhere to numerous federal, state, and local regulations, including those related to patient privacy, licensing, and public health reporting. Insurance agents should be familiar with these regulations and help clients obtain coverage that addresses compliance-related risks.

  2. Professional Liability: Health department staff, including doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals, may face claims of malpractice or negligence in providing medical care or advice. Insurance agents should ensure that clients have professional liability insurance to protect them from potential lawsuits and financial losses.

  3. Workers’ Compensation: Health departments employ various staff members, including administrative personnel and healthcare professionals, who may suffer work-related injuries or illnesses. Agents should ensure that clients have adequate workers’ compensation coverage as required by law.

  4. Data Privacy and Security: Health departments handle sensitive patient information, which can expose them to cyber risks. Insurance agents should help clients assess their vulnerability to data breaches and other cyber threats, ensuring they have proper cyber liability coverage.

  5. Property and General Liability: Health departments often operate in multiple locations and may own or lease buildings and equipment. Agents should ensure that clients have adequate property insurance to cover potential damages, as well as general liability insurance to protect against claims of bodily injury, property damage, or personal and advertising injury.

  6. Employment Practices Liability: Health departments, as employers, may face claims related to employment practices, such as wrongful termination, discrimination, or harassment. Agents should recommend employment practices liability insurance to cover potential legal expenses and settlements.

  7. Public Health Emergency Risks: Health departments play a critical role in responding to public health emergencies, such as disease outbreaks or natural disasters. Insurance agents should be aware of the unique risks associated with these events, including potential claims related to emergency response and preparedness.

  8. Budget Constraints: Many health departments face budget constraints, which can impact their ability to obtain and maintain adequate insurance coverage. Agents should work with clients to find cost-effective solutions that address their insurance needs without compromising their budget.

  9. Supply Chain Disruptions: Health departments rely on various suppliers to provide medical supplies, equipment, and medications. Agents should be aware of the potential risks associated with supply chain disruptions, which may affect clients’ operations and insurance requirements.

  10. Evolving Healthcare Landscape: The healthcare landscape is continually changing due to advancements in technology, evolving regulations, and new treatment methods. Insurance agents should stay informed about these changes and their potential impact on clients’ risk profiles and insurance needs.

By understanding these challenges, commercial insurance agents can better serve health departments and help them obtain the necessary insurance coverage to protect their operations, staff, and the communities they serve.

what specific insurance do they need?

Health departments require a range of insurance coverages to protect their operations, staff, patients, and property. Some of the essential insurance policies they may need include:

  1. General Liability Insurance: This coverage protects against claims of bodily injury, property damage, and personal and advertising injury resulting from the health department’s operations. It can help cover legal fees, medical expenses, and settlement costs.
  2. Professional Liability Insurance: Also known as medical malpractice insurance, this policy covers claims arising from mistakes or negligence by healthcare professionals in providing medical care or advice. It can help pay for legal fees, settlements, and judgments in case of lawsuits.
  3. Workers’ Compensation Insurance: This coverage is required by law in most states and provides benefits to employees who suffer work-related injuries or illnesses. It can help cover medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs.
  4. Commercial Property Insurance: This policy covers damage to the health department’s buildings and contents due to events such as fire, theft, vandalism, or natural disasters. It can also include coverage for loss of income due to property damage that interrupts business operations.
  5. Cyber Liability Insurance: This coverage addresses financial losses and legal expenses resulting from data breaches, cyberattacks, or other cybersecurity incidents that compromise sensitive patient information.
  6. Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI): This policy protects the health department against claims related to employment practices, such as wrongful termination, discrimination, or harassment. It can help pay for legal defense, settlements, and judgments.
  7. Directors and Officers (D&O) Liability Insurance: This coverage protects the board members and officers of the health department against claims of wrongful acts, mismanagement, or breach of fiduciary duty. It can cover legal fees, settlement costs, and other related expenses.
  8. Business Interruption Insurance: This policy covers lost income and extra expenses incurred if the health department’s operations are temporarily disrupted due to a covered event, such as a natural disaster or significant property damage.
  9. Commercial Auto Insurance: If the health department owns or operates vehicles for transporting patients, medical supplies, or conducting other business activities, this policy covers liability and physical damage related to those vehicles.
  10. Crime Insurance: This coverage protects the health department against losses from crimes such as theft, fraud, or employee dishonesty. It can help reimburse the organization for stolen funds, property, or other assets.
  11. Umbrella or Excess Liability Insurance: This policy provides additional liability protection beyond the limits of the underlying policies, such as general liability, auto liability, and employers’ liability.

These are some of the primary insurance coverages that health departments may need. It’s essential for the organization to work closely with a knowledgeable insurance agent to ensure that they have the appropriate policies in place to address their specific risks and requirements.

advice for commercial agents approaching health centers

As a commercial insurance agent, approaching health departments can present unique challenges and opportunities. Here are some advice and tips for effectively working with these organizations:

  1. Understand the Industry: Familiarize yourself with the specific challenges and risks facing health departments. Research the regulatory environment, common issues, and trends in public health. This knowledge will help you better serve your clients and provide tailored advice.
  2. Be Empathetic and Respectful: Remember that health departments play a vital role in safeguarding public health and well-being. Approach these organizations with empathy and respect, demonstrating your genuine interest in helping them protect their operations, staff, and patients.
  3. Develop Specialized Expertise: Given the unique risks associated with health departments, consider developing specialized expertise in this area. This may involve obtaining additional training, certifications, or working with industry associations to stay informed about best practices and evolving insurance needs.
  4. Offer Customized Solutions: Recognize that each health department may have different needs and challenges. Work closely with your clients to assess their risks and tailor insurance policies that address their specific requirements. Offer personalized solutions rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.
  5. Establish Trust and Build Relationships: Health departments need to trust their insurance agent to provide reliable guidance and support. Invest time in building relationships with clients, demonstrating your commitment to their long-term success. Maintain open and honest communication and be responsive to their concerns and questions.
  6. Provide Risk Management Resources: Offer risk management resources and support to help health departments minimize potential exposures. This may include providing educational materials, organizing training sessions, or connecting clients with industry experts.
  7. Be Patient and Persistent: Securing insurance coverage for health departments can sometimes be challenging due to the higher risks associated with their operations. Be patient and persistent in finding the right carriers and policies for your clients, even if it takes more time and effort than usual.
  8. Stay Up-to-Date on Regulations and Legislation: Regulations and legislation affecting health departments can change frequently. Stay informed about any updates to ensure that your clients remain compliant and have the necessary coverage in place.
  9. Network with Related Professionals: Connect with other professionals who work with health departments, such as public health officials, medical professionals, and government agencies. These relationships can provide valuable insights, referrals, and opportunities for collaboration.
  10. Showcase Your Success Stories: Share case studies or testimonials from other health departments you have successfully helped to demonstrate your expertise and credibility. This can help build trust with potential clients and showcase the value you can bring to their organization.

By following this advice, commercial insurance agents can better serve health departments and help them obtain the insurance coverage they need to protect their operations, staff, and the communities they serve.

Contact Michael Richards now

Michael specializes in insurance for this particular group. You can call him on the number below or fill out the form and he will get your message directly:

Michael Richards

sourcing the best insurance for health departments is essential for commercial agents


General Liability Insurance

General Liability insurance cover medical expenses and attorney fees which result from bodily injuries and property damage that your company or organization could be legally responsible for.

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Professional Liability Insurance

Professional liability insurance, also known as errors and omissions insurance (E&O) and medical malpractice insurance, protects your business against claims of negligence, malpractice, errors, and omissions which may have occurred during the fulfillment of a professional service.

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Telemedicine Malpractice Insurance

telemedicine malpractice insurance—also known as digital health insurance or eHealth insurance—has become increasingly vital for healthcare providers. to  protect them against claims of negligence, malpractice, errors, and omissions which may be the result of the limitations of webcam quality or the inability of a patient to properly photograph a condition. It can also cover cyber liability, such as remote controlled medical devices being hacked.

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Directors and Officers Liability (D&O) insurance

D&O insurance (Directors and officers liability insurance), shields the personal assets of company directors and officers, and where necessary, their spouses, from claims which could arise as a result of the decisions they made and actions they took within the scope of their regular duties.

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Cyber liability insurance

Cyber liability insurance covers the financial costs associated with a breach of your cyber security, such as a ransomware attack. It also covers first party costs including event management, data restoration, financial costs to third parties, network interruption, and cyber extortion.

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HNO Insurance

HNOA, (hired non-owned auto insurance) is designed for organizations who regularly hire vehicles or require employees to use their own vehicles in the course of their work. In the case of an accident where your employee was liable, it could cover physical damage to that other person’s vehicle, medical expenses, the cost of hiring an attorney to defend your business.

Workers’ Comp. Insurance

Workers’ compensation insurance covers your employees for workplace injuries or illness. It provides them with medical and wage benefits.

This coverage is mandated by each state, with the wage and medical benefits varying from state to state. Workers compensation also protects business owners from civil suits by workers who become injured on the job.

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Employment Practices Liability

Employment practices liability insurance (EPL insurance or EPLI), covers employers (PDF) against claims made by employees for:

  • Discrimination (based on sex, race, age or disability, for example)
  • Wrongful termination
  • Harassment
  • Failure to promote and other employment-related issues
Sexual Abuse & Molestation (SAM)

Sexual Abuse and Molestation Insurance provides coverage for organizations against claims arising from alleged sexual misconduct or molestation by an employee or other representative of the organization. 

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Environmental Liability insurance

Environmental Liability insurance is liability insurance specifically designed to protect environmental liabilities. This is a specialized form of general, commercial liability insurance that provides financial protection against litigation and clean-up costs resulting from claims of injury or damage caused by pollution, contamination or hazardous waste disposals. 

Commercial Property Insurance

Commercial property insurance is a fundamental component of risk management for healthcare and senior living providers. It is designed to protect the organization’s physical assets, such as buildings, medical equipment, furniture, and supplies, from financial losses due to damage or theft.

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Crime Insurance

Crime Insurance covers the insured party a reimbursement if their property is damaged due to a crime. Crime Insurance usually has a huge range of options and comes in different forms. It can be either a rider that can be attached to the existing insurance policy, or it is available as a completely separate product.

Commercial Auto Insurance

Commercial auto insurance is a crucial aspect of risk management for healthcare and senior living providers. It offers vital financial protection against vehicle-related incidents and is often required by law.

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Fully/Partially Funded insurance

Partially Funded insurance gives facilities the opportunity to pay a set premium for, and then in turn is  partially covered for specific risks.

Fully Funded Insurance allows facilities to pay premiums to have coverage against all risks. In return, if they are unfortunate enough to incur any of the covered loss or injury, they are reimbursed their insurance policy amount.

Excess and umbrella coverage

Excess coverage provides an additional layer of protection over and above what an underlying policy provides. It applies to a single policy only.

An umbrella policy on the other hand, provides additional liability coverage over and above what is provided by a number of underlying policies.

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we've got you covered

General Liability Insurance

Protecting healthcare organizations against increasingly crippling litigation.

Professional Liability Insurance

Protecting medical professionals against increasingly crippling litigation.

Medical Malpractice Insurance

Protecting medical professionals against increasingly crippling litigation.

Cyber Liability Insurance

Protecting healthcare organizations & professionals against cyber attacks.

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insurance for hospitals

Hospital Insurance typically covers all or part of the potential liability for hospital services. It includes medical malpractice, accidents involving hospital employees and equipment, care during surgery or any other invasive treatment, after-hours care arrangements by staff who need help with their children and more.

insurance for long term care facilities

Long term care facilities must protect themselves against potential liability arising from incidents within their facility. Westwood can help you negotiate a package tailored to your long term care facility client.

insurance for physicians

The different types of insurance for physicians includes medical malpractice insurance, professional liability insurance, errors and omissions insurance, an umbrella policy, and professional indemnity. As a physician, you should have access to all of these types of insurance.

traditional insurance products

Westwood have fostered exceptional relationships with underwriters and we go to great lengths to keep abreast of their latest products, changes in requirements and restrictions, including having weekly calls with the carriers, which you can see here, by joining our insurance insider group.

    Insurance products at Westwood Insurance Group

    You can find more information on the Insurance Products main page.

    If you have any questions on the different policies, check out our Insurance FAQ's

    alternative structures

    Westwood President, Michael Richards has extensive experience in setting up alternative structures for larger clients. Here are some examples:

    If you think your client could be large and stable enough to benefit from starting or participating in a captive or has a special need for another alternative structure, contact Michael Richards now by phone: 855 351 7487.