Hospitals, dental practices, podiatry clinics, and other health care providers need a wide variety of insurance coverages to protect their businesses. Aside from high liability coverage, they need to be able to make repairs as quickly as possible after hailstorms sweep through their property. Attorney Bill Voss explains why weather-related property damage claims are particularly difficult for hospitals and clinics, as well as how board members and administrators can maximize hail claim payments.
Policy Endorsements That Can Help Clinics Recover After Hail Damage
When it comes to insuring a medical facility, it pays to be as specific as possible. Coverage options should be tailored to the types of services offered, the location and scope of the facilities, and the amount it would take to completely rebuild after a total loss.
In addition to choosing appropriate policy limits, certain extended coverages that could provide even more after a hail storm, such as:
- Ordinance or law coverage. Whether you run a major healthcare system or a small independent clinic, you will have to make sure that new construction adheres to current building and health department codes. In many cases, a building that has sustained damages of 50 percent or more to the structure cannot be repaired—it must be demolished and rebuilt. Building ordinance insurance can be used to pay the additional costs of demolition, loss of the undamaged portion of the structure, and meeting building codes in the new facility.
- Biohazardous waste coverage. Damage to a medical facility may require cleanup and disposal of hazardous waste, such as blood, standing water, mold, and contaminated items. Limited policies may not cover the full costs of hiring a certified cleanup crew, passing the expense onto the policyholder and causing additional delays.
- Special equipment coverage. Expensive medical equipment such as dentist chairs, diagnostic scanners, hospital beds, industrial refrigerators and freezers, or computer networks systems may need higher coverage or a separate deductible to fully compensate you after a loss. Each item of expensive equipment should be specifically listed on your property damage policy, with the number of each item owned and its replacement cost.
- Special event insurance. After hail and flood damage, you may be forced to cancel blood drives, elective surgeries, pop-up vaccination clinics, meet-and-greet events, fundraisers, and other special events. Special events coverage can help you pay for lost deposits, mobile health clinics, catering, event advertising, and other event costs—and may potentially replace the income that these events would have generated.
- Vehicle coverage. Medical facilities may own fleets of commercial vehicles (such as vans, buses, and security cruisers), rely on leased vehicles, or use personal vehicles for business purposes. If these vehicles suffer broken windshields, dented bodywork, or other damage in a hailstorm, owners will have to check their policies carefully to see whether the damage is covered.
- Business interruption insurance. Even if you are able to keep your doors open after a severe storm, you may have to run your clinic offsite or operate at less than full volume while repairs are underway. For medical practitioners, fewer patients could mean income losses in the millions at a time when any spare funds are going toward rebuilding. Business interruption insurance replaces lost revenue during the period of restoration after weather damage, allowing you to continue paying vital employees, rent a temporary business location, and cover out-of-pocket costs.
You’ll Need an Experienced Attorney to Fight an Insurance Denial
Our hail insurance claim attorneys have seen far too many business owners underpaid for their property damage and income losses after a covered event. If you’re tired of fighting a commercial insurance company to get what you are owed, the Voss Law Firm can help you get the compensation you need to save your business. Fill out our contact form today to get answers to your questions, or start reading your copy of our free book, The Basics of Commercial Insurance Claims.