Understanding Physician Disability Insurance
Physician disability insurance provides coverage for the costs of medical care in case you can’t perform your usual medical practice due to illness or injury. Usually, physician disability insurance policies cover you for the full period of actual physical disability caused by a covered medical condition. Coverage may be temporary or permanent. Temporary disability insurance usually covers you during a time of short-term disability caused by an injury or illness, while permanent coverage covers you during a period of permanent disability caused by long-term disabilities.
Some physician disability insurance policies specify a two-year minimum period of coverage. For those with deductibles of more than $6000, this coverage is usually offered at a reduced cost. In addition, most disability insurance plans offer coverage even for pregnancies, accidents, and military service. These benefits may also extend to two full working years after the date of loss of a regular income. There are, however, certain circumstances that exclude coverage for certain medical professionals such as radiologists, psychiatrist, and podiatrist.
Generally, disability coverage is intended to keep a medical professional functioning at the level of his or her skill and capability. For example, if a psychiatrist is unable to work because of a mental disorder, the plan would pay for necessary counseling and therapy. In this situation, the patient would have a grace period of two years from the date of diagnosis before the psychiatrist’s condition became stabilized to begin treatment. If the psychiatrist had been treated for the disorder within the two years preceding the diagnosis, the condition could be deemed minor and the benefits could be extended for that period.
If a woman becomes pregnant, her physician will provide a form for covering herself during the pregnancy and for up to three months thereafter. If she is unable to return to work while providing for the infant, then a PPO (point of service) plan would be best for her. However, if she chooses to remain employed, then physician disability insurance would cover her.
Another situation that could lead to reduced disability benefits is if the insured is unable to work because of a serious physical impairment that permanently affects one or more of his or her major organs. In this case, the coverage period begins to run from the date of diagnosis to the date of completion of the rehabilitation program. During this period, most insurance plans exclude coverage for most elective and routine surgeries, further reducing the benefit.
There are two basic types of physician disability insurance available: fee-for-service and managed care. Fee-for-service plans generally require that each physician who is eligible to participate in the plan. Managed care plans typically require participating physicians to enroll in a network of providers that participate in the network. These plans typically provide more benefits and coverage than fee-for-service plans. However, it’s important to note that even managed care plans may exclude some physician-related procedures like plastic surgery.
To find out more about physician disability insurance in Texas, contact a licensed health insurance agent. There are several websites that provide quick links to various insurance companies in Texas. Health insurance agents can often match a patient’s needs with an appropriate policy. They can also make suggestions about how to make the most of a physician disability policy.
Today, there are several options for covering physician expenses in the physician-directed plans. Beneficiaries can choose plans that offer savings on premiums and deductibles, as well as comprehensive coverage for medical-related care. Some plans allow beneficiaries to choose from a pre-existing medical condition and some allow them to select their own doctors. But perhaps the most important factor in choosing physician disability insurance is finding a company that will cover a physician who becomes disabled. Insurance companies that only offer a limited range of doctors may exclude the very physicians most needed by their policy holders.