Does Your Acupuncture Business Need Malpractice Insurance?

June 15, 2018

Professional liability insurance protects medical and alternative health care professionals. All health care practitioners are required by law to obtain liability insurance; this protects their patients in the event of an injury as a result of either medical malpractice or a procedure gone wrong.

Traditional medical practitioners must have malpractice insurance to cover the high costs of medical care and the potential liabilities that come with  treatment. Acupuncturists are in a similar position, and malpractice insurance is especially necessary for these practitioners. The general public is not as informed about alternative medicine as they are with traditional medicine, so litigation is a real risk for acupuncturists. Lawsuits can occur even in cases where the acupuncturist followed the best practices for treatment

Reasons Why an Acupuncture Practice May Be Sued

When a patient feels they have been harmed, rather than helped, by acupuncture treatment, they may sue the practitioner for malpractice. These cases can be litigated by a personal injury lawyer on behalf of the person alleging a case of acupuncture gone wrong. Some reasons why an acupuncturist practice may be sued include:

  • Failing to refer the patient to a more qualified professional. The acupuncturist is responsible for assessing the condition of the patient and referring the patient to another type of health care professional when necessary.
     
  • Injury due to improper technique. For example, injuries are possible when a needle insertion technique is performed incorrectly.
     
  • Inadequate sterilization of the needles. Cleanliness is a central component of any safe acupuncture procedure. If the practitioner neglects this responsibility, the patient may get an infection, which can be used as evidence of injury and malpractice in a lawsuit.

Lawsuits from injured patients represent just one of the issues of operating an acupuncture practice, and lawsuits are more prevalent in some states than others. Adequate acupuncture malpractice insurance is always necessary, and even more important if the practitioner lives in a state with a high rate of acupuncture malpractice cases.

 Shielding Your Acupuncture Business

Shield your acupuncture business against acupuncture gone wrong lawsuits by remaining compliant and aware of all the standards that govern and regulate acupuncture on the state and national levels. It is also important to keep reading additional information about lawsuits pertaining to the industry as they emerge. When the legal system changes the rules that govern and regulate acupuncture, it affects every practitioner. Awareness of a new legal precedent will also help you protect your acupuncture business against lawsuits that allege acupuncture gone wrong.

Always keep your malpractice insurance information updated and available to minimize your risks. Malpractice insurance is an essential protection for your acupuncture business. Contact a Hiscox representative to learn more about the available acupuncturist coverage options in the state where your acupuncture license was issued.