Many generalist agents and brokers use this term as a catch-all for any healthcare facility or location. Are they talking about a physician group? A medical spa? An individual physician’s private practice? Any outpatient facility? What makes a clinic truly a clinic?
To answer this question, we have to look at key components such as ownership structure and operational protocol, including staff utilization, and level of service. These can be further simplified into the defining characteristics of a traditional clinic:
Many individual physicians consider their private solo practices to be clinics. Traditionally though, a clinic has multiple physicians and/or providers and is not necessarily owned by a solo doctor. They have a specific ratio of MDs to midlevels, as opposed to the midlevels working under just one physician.
Traditional clinics generally utilize multiple doctors and allied providers. These doctors do not have to have ownership in the clinic, and are usually employed or contracted.
Unlike medical facilities such as urgent cares, clinics take appointments. They do not see the volume of walk-ins or the level of urgency that a traditional clinic would be equipped to handle.
The majority of clinics are specialty specific. We are seeing an increase in “multi-specialty” clinics, but these are still specific in their aim and scope of treatments that they offer.
We have to be careful when using the term clinic to secure medical malpractice coverage. Within the varying clinic categories are a myriad of questions including the potential need for provider direct patient care coverage, administrative duties exposure, types of vicarious risk to the entity, and individual practitioner prior acts exposure.
At Ethos, we specialize in figuring out what kind of clinic you need to insure and the best way to categorize it. This helps you to get the best possible quotes available. Call us if you need help unraveling these exposures. We’re happy to help.