Regulated Pharmacy Technicians are fast becoming a major force in the delivery of healthcare right across Canada.
Along with this increased responsibility, technicians are also being held to a higher duty of care standard by the public. As licensed professionals the College of Pharmacy in each province requires you to purchase and maintain professional liability insurance also known as “malpractice insurance” at all times while practicing.
The College’s objectives are to protect the public by ensuring that monies will be available in the form of compensation in the event of a “Negligent Act”. However, the legal community also pays close attention to technicians’ duty of care and will not hesitate to launch an action against a technician if they feel they can access some of these new found insurance dollars.
One of the most important components of a professional liability policy is the defence costs it affords to the insured. Even if an action against you seems unfounded or frivolous, you still need to defend yourself against the allegations and this can end up costing thousands of dollars in legal fees.
You will have a number of options available to you for coverage but not all policies are created equal.
The two major forms of coverage that are available in the marketplace today are known as the “Claims Made” and “Occurrence” forms of insurance. There are advantages and disadvantages to both styles of coverage but in your case the requirements of the various Colleges makes the “Occurrence” form by far the more superior policy.
With the “Claims Made” policy the wording states that the policy must be in force when the claim is made. This makes it tricky should you retire or leave the profession for claims that are brought against you long after you are no longer practicing. The solution is to purchase a runoff period of insurance that lasts for a number of years to protect you against claims that pop up after you leave the profession. The problem is that it will cost you an additional premium to purchase this run off coverage and in some cases the cost can be quite steep.
The “Occurrence” form on the other hand states that the policy does not need to be in force when the claim is made, as long as it was in force when the incident occurred. This means that the need for runoff coverage is not necessary, as you will be protected against future claims after you leave the profession, provided you had this form of coverage while you were practicing.
Other things you will need to look out for in your policy are deductibles for defence costs, actual settlements or legal expense benefits for disciplinary hearings at the College, if your policy contains this coverage.
We are pleased to have partnered with CAPT for a number of years in order to deliver the most comprehensive policy available to Regulated Technicians across Canada. The policy is written on the “Occurrence” form, contains no deductibles and provides an additional $50,000 of legal expense benefits should you need legal assistance related to a complaint made to the College from a member of the public or any other scope of practice issue, other than a criminal act or fraud. The annual premium for our coverage is only $75 per year with your CAPT membership and offers the best protection at a great value.
Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact our office at 1-800-668-4830 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Gary McCaslin, CAI, McCaslin Horne Insurance Brokers Inc.