Towergate's Guide to Home Care Insurance

Domiciliary care companies have legal requirements and vital business protection considerations when getting the right insurance. Our guide talks you through some of the care specific features you should look out for and walks you through the details of home care insurance policies.

What is home care insurance?

Care services and their businesses come in all shapes and sizes, and cater to many different users – from self employed or private carers, to larger agencies. Whether you provide personal, nursing or night care, carer respite services, household and gardening duties or one of many other forms of care. These services and responsibilities all come with a diverse range of risks. Towergate offers tailored insurance solutions, specific to your industry, designed with your risks in mind.

Simply put, standard business insurance doesn’t include vital protection against the specific risks of the care industry which could leave patients, staff and business vulnerable. These risks include care-specific risks, such as the risk of a malpractice lawsuit or the risk of infectious diseases. 

Personal accident – In the care industry standard can’t be allowed to slip. But if a personal accident is keeping a member of staff off sick extra pressure is added to the rest of your work force, creating stress. Personal accident cover on your care home insurance policy can cover you for increased costs of working due to an absence of this kind, helping you to pay for replacement staff and keep your standards up.

Do I need home care insurance?

If your organisation is defined as any of the following*, you may benefit from the protection of a care home insurance policy:

  • Personal care
  • Nursing care
  • Night care
  • Carer respite services
  • Household and gardening duties

*Please note that this is not a complete list of organisation types that may benefit from a home care insurance policy.

Simply put, standard business insurance doesn’t include vital protection against the specific risks of the care industry which could leave patients, staff and business vulnerable. While some insurance providers could patch together various policies to cover your liability, buildings, contents etc., this will likely leave holes in your cover for things like:

Medical malpractice insurance - Towergate offers one of the widest ranges of disease covers excluding only AIDS, Avian flu, Swine Flu and SARS.

Infectious disease cover - Cover against the break out of infections is an important protection for most businesses operating in the care industry. Towergate offer cover against all known diseases, but whoever you get insurance with, make sure it offers the widest protection possible.

Flexible liability cover - While most policies will include public liability cover at £5 million as standard (our policies do this too) there are times when you may need to temporarily or permanently raise this limit to £10 million in order to tender for a public contract. Try to find a policy which offers you flexible limits meaning you can raise the amount you’re covered by. This is so you won’t miss out on quality contracts that require higher levels of liability.

Directors and liability insurance - D&O insurance is a liability cover that protects your business against compensation claims brought about through an act of one of your directors or managers. It is important because these actions may not be covered by your other liability insurances. For example, this protects the personal assets of any director or officer of the company resulting from an error or omission, breach of duty or other matter whilst acting in such capacity for the company. The claim could be against them personally, not the company. This can leave them responsible for payments and could stop them operating in their job.

What does home care insurance cover?

Tips on getting the best home care cover

Building and tenant improvements – Maintaining and modernising a care home is a full time job. As you grow, add new equipment, make repairs or add extensions make sure you re-calculate you building and contents ‘sum insured’ levels accordingly.  Without being careful you could exceed the amount you are covered for which could have a negative effect if you needed to make a claim.

Personal accident – In the care industry standard can’t be allowed to slip. But if a personal accident is keeping a member of staff off sick extra pressure is added to the rest of your work force, creating stress. Personal accident cover on your care home insurance policy can cover you for increased costs of working due to an absence of this kind, helping you to pay for replacement staff and keep your standards up.

Covering your home care business with Towergate

As well as great insurance our care home customers have access to all these useful features free of charge.

CyberHR: This is an online care-specific human resources management tool.

24-hour legal advice line: giving you access to industry-specific qualified solicitors and barristers for impartial advice over the phone, at any time. You don’t need to have a claim brought against you, so even if you suspect on might be raised, contact them for advice on how to handle the situation.

Bespoke legal expenses: Protects you and your business in the event of legal disputes and provides cover for the costs of solicitors, barristers, expert witnesses and court proceedings.

24-hour stress helpline: The care industry sees a high level of stress amongst staff. Our free, confidential service offers employers the resource to provide their duty of care. This can prove a vital tool in helping your staff cope and keeping up your standards.

BCARM: Online business continuity and risk management service. Read more about BCARM here.

 

This is a marketing article by Towergate Insurance.

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