Blood Bank Insurance Alaska Policy Information
Blood Bank Insurance Alaska. Blood banks play a vital role in the health care system, by separating donated blood into its component parts, testing it, and storing it - in a state where it's ready to save lives at any time. Blood banks may collect blood from donors, or that particular stage in the process may be performed elsewhere.
Blood banks draw blood from donors, determine its blood type (A, B, AB or O) and Rh type (positive or negative), and test it for irregularities such as hepatitis or HIV. If acceptable, the blood is separated into components (red blood cells, plasma, and platelets), then stored for transfusion to recipients.
While storage is generally by refrigeration and limited to 42 days, some components may be frozen for longer periods of time. While whole blood is generally provided by volunteer donors, plasma banks may pay for donations.
The blood bank may be a separate freestanding facility or it may be part of a larger laboratory in a hospital setting.
The existence of blood banks continuously saves lives, as blood transfusions quite literally represent a life line for a multitude of patients, whether they suffer from medical conditions such as hemophilia, or suffered traumas in which they lost large amounts of blood.
In performing their critical services, however, blood banks also face a number of risks. Each of these major perils has the potential to bring devastating costs with it, and that it is why it is vital for blood banks to carry extensive insurance.
What types of blood bank insurance Alaska might be needed? Learn more in this brief guide.
Blood bank insurance Alaska protects your blood donation operation from lawsuits with rates as low as $67/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Why Do Alaska Blood Banks Need Insurance?
Similar to any commercial venture or even private residence, blood banks can be confronted with a number of perils at any time. Some or the risks blood banks have to consider are almost universal, while others are specific to this field.
The right insurance plan cannot only help blood banks meet legal requirements, but also ensure that mishaps do not cause undue strain on predetermined budgets. A blood bank that has invested in proper insurance can overcome any of the risks it may encounter much more easily.
The facility itself may, along with its precious contents, be hit by an act of nature - wildfires, earthquakes, and severe floods are merely some of the possibilities. Theft and vandalism may cause damage to equipment vital to the process of separating blood into its components or testing its safety, or the equipment may spontaneously break down.
Anyone, whether a blood donor, a recipient, or an employee exposed to blood products may file a lawsuit alleging bodily harm or property damage.
As you may imagine, any of these perils have the unfortunate potential of leading to massive expenses. Organizations that have the right blood bank insurance Alaska plans, however, will be able to overcome the challenge, as a significant portion of the costs will be covered by the insurance company.
What Type Of Insurance Do AK Blood Banks Need?
Blood banks will need to carry various types of insurance. The specific kinds of coverage that will best protect a blood bank from the perils it may face depend on factors such as the jurisdiction where the blood bank is based, the volume of blood products it handles, the equipment it uses, and how many employees it has.
An insurance broker who specializes in the health care niche is optimally equipped to advise individual blood banks about their particular insurance needs. However, some of the most important types of blood bank insurance Alaska coverage are:
- Commercial Property: This type of coverage protects against financial losses if the building in which a blood bank operates is damaged in acts of nature, or due to theft or vandalism. The assets inside, which will include equipment and blood products, are also covered.
- General Liability: Designed to cover attorney fees and settlement costs in case a third party files a personal injury or property damage claim, this type of blood bank insurance Alaska is essential. It covers instances in which someone trips on a wet floor, for instance, or in which a blood bank employee accidentally causes damage to personal property.
- Workers' Compensation: This type of insurance helps blood banks shoulder the burden associated with work-related injuries or illnesses employees may sustain, such as because they were exposed to blood products. The employee's medical bills are covered, alongside lost income if they are unable to return to work for a time.
- Malpractice: Blood banks will also need to carry malpractice insurance - a type of coverage that offers protection in the event of lawsuits in which medical errors or negligence are alleged.
While these forms of insurance will be essential for any blood bank, bear in mind that additional kinds of coverage may also be required.
Consulting an experienced insurance broker who is familiar with the medical field will be able to answer any questions they may have, as well as helping them craft the best possible blood bank insurance Alaska plan.
AK Blood Bank's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure is moderate due to public access to the premises. To prevent trips, slips, and falls, all areas accessible to donors must be well maintained with floor covering in good condition. The number of exits must be sufficient, and be well marked, with backup lighting in case of power failure. Steps should have handrails, be illuminated, marked, and in good repair.
Parking lots should be maintained free of ice and snow. Housekeeping should be excellent and spills must be cleaned up promptly. Overhead equipment should be moved before donors exit collection chairs. Drinks should be provided to donors who may feel lightheaded after donating blood.
Confidentiality of donor records is critical as the unauthorized release of information relating to a donor's medical and social history could result in personal injury.
Products liability exposure is light because blood is considered a service, not a product, under product liability statutes. The exposure increases if the blood bank sells blood or its parts to a manufacturer as a component which can be combined with other ingredients in a final product.
Environmental impairment exposure is significant due to the potential for contaminating the air, ground, or water from improperly disposing of medical waste, including contaminants such as hepatitis B or the AIDS virus. Disposal must be documented and meet all FDA and EPA standards.
Professional exposures are extensive. The exposure increases if the blood bank fails to conduct thorough background checks to verify employees' credentials, education, and licensing. Incorrect typing of blood or failure to detect communicable conditions can result in transmission of disease, injury, or even death to the recipient of donated blood.
Exact protocols must be followed. Needles and other equipment must be sterilized and sanitized to prevent the spread of blood-borne infectious diseases such as hepatitis, HIV, and AIDS. Sterile environments must be maintained in order to prevent contamination.
Workers compensation exposure can be very high as workers routinely handle donations that may carry blood-borne pathogens. Gloves and masks must be worn at all times when working around any bodily fluids. Employees should have access to vaccinations to prevent diseases. Employees may receive puncture wounds from needles. Constant cleansing with disinfectants can result in dermatitis to exposed skin.
Back injuries, sprains, and strains can occur when assisting or lifting donors. Slips and falls can occur from tripping over objects or slick floors. Since donor information and billings are done on computers, potential injuries include eyestrain, neck strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and similar cumulative trauma injuries that can be addressed through ergonomically designed workstations.
Drivers of bloodmobiles may be injured in automobile accidents or suffer back injuries from lifting.
Property exposures can be high as blood banks rely on sophisticated high-value equipment for testing and processing blood. Ignition sources include electrical wiring, heating, and air conditioning systems, and overheating of equipment. Equipment, especially refrigeration and freezing units, must be well maintained. Electrical wiring must meet all current codes.
Smoking should be prohibited. Blood banks require sterile conditions. A small fire could cause a total loss due to smoke contamination requiring re-sterilization. Business interruption and extra expense are significant due to the high cost of diagnostic equipment and the time it may take to repair or replace a damaged item.
Equipment breakdown exposure is high as operations are dependent on the equipment used in drawing, testing, and storing blood. A breakdown could be costly due to the time to install replacement parts or the lack of appropriate backup facilities. All equipment should be maintained on an ongoing basis.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty. Background checks, including criminal history, should be obtained on each employee prior to hiring. Ordering and billing must be handled by two different employees.
Inland marine exposure consists of accounts receivable if the blood bank bills for services, computers and valuable papers and records for donors' and suppliers' information as well as analysis reports. Analytical equipment may be computerized.
Some equipment may be mobile if any collection takes place off site or if the equipment is shared between locations. Records should be duplicated and stored in an off-site facility.
Commercial auto exposure is generally limited to hired and non-owned liability for employees running errands. Mobile blood banks may travel to donor locations such as offices, shopping malls, or residential areas. All drivers should be licensed with acceptable MVRs.
Vehicle maintenance should be ongoing and documented in a central location. If the blood bank transports blood, a spill could have an adverse impact on the environment or others with whom the blood comes into contact.
Blood Bank Insurance Alaska - The Bottom Line
For the safety of your donors, your operation and your employees - having the correct blood bank insurance Alaska coverage is essential. To discover what types of policy options are available to you including coverages, exclusions and premiums, speak to a reputable commercial insurance broker.
Alaska Economic Data, Regulations And Limits On Commercial Insurance
If you're an entrepreneur who is thinking about starting a business in Alaska, it's important to have a basic understanding of the state's overall economy before you set up shop. Regardless of how high-quality the products and services you are planning on offering may be, if the location where you open your organization doesn't offer a target market that your products and services will appeal to, chances of success are slim. Furthermore, if a workforce isn't available to support your business, you'll have a hard time staying afloat.
With that said, it's important for business-minded individuals who are thinking about starting a company in Alaska to familiarize themselves with the state's economy; it's also a good idea to have an understanding of the commercial insurance requirements.
Following is an overview of economic trends and commercial insurance policies that business owners are required to carry in The Last Frontier.
Economic Trends For Business Owners In Alaska
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate in Alaska was 6.1% in December of 2019. While that's significantly higher than the national unemployment rate, which was 3.4% in December, 2019, it's lower than it was one year prior, when the rate of unemployment was 6.5% in December of 2018. Though the workforce is growing slower than it is in other states, economists do predict that the rate will continue to decline in the coming years.
Despite Alaska's remoteness and cold climate, it's actually a great start to start a business. According to the Tax Foundation, Alaska is the second most tax-friendly state for business owners in the United States, as there's no individual income tax or state sales tax. Additionally, Alaska has the second highest rate of new business owners, as well as the second highest percentage of available employees (as per 2016).
As in most states, the best spots to start a business in Alaska are the state's biggest cities and the surrounding areas. This includes Anchorage, Juneau, and Fairbanks. Other key areas that are seeing a boost in business development in recent years include Homer, Sitka, Prudhoe Bay, and Ketchikan.
While there are several industries that are experiencing growth in The Last Frontier, specific sectors thrive more than others. Businesses that are related to the following industries are booming in AK:
- Fishing, which is also one of the largest contributors to the state's economy.
- Mining, which provides more than 4,500 jobs in Alaska.
- Petroleum, which is responsible for 34% of jobs in the state. In fact, Prudhoe Bay is North America's largest oil field.
- Tourism is the second largest private sector employer in the state. Each year, millions of people from around the globe travel to Alaska to marvel at the numerous natural wonders that can be found here.
Commercial Insurance Requirements In Alaska
The Alaska Division of Insurance regulates insurance in AK. Alaska mandates very few forms of insurance coverage by law. They enforce worker's compensation.
Alaska requires you to have worker's compensation insurance if you hire even one employee on a regular basis. This includes part-time employees, family members, minors, and immigrant employees. It is not required for independent contractors or domestic employees, though you should check to make sure any contractors you have are true contractors, and not employees.
Alaska also requires all business-owned vehicles to be covered by commercial auto insurance. Other types of business insurance that business owners should carry depend on the specific industry.
Additional Resources For Medical Insurance
Discover small business insurance for medical and dental professionals. Medical malpractice insurance is a type of professional liability that protects health care professionals from liability causing in bodily injury, medical expenses and property damage.
- Ambulatory Surgical Center
- Art Therapy
- Assisted Living Facilities
- Blood Banks
- Dental Lab
- Dental Office
- Diagnostic Imaging Centers
- Health Maintenance Organizations
- Healthcare Facilities
- Home Medical Equipment Dealers
- Marriage & Family Therapy
- Medical Clinics
- Medical Laboratories
- Medical Marijuana Dispensary
- Medical Practice
- Medical, Surgical & Hospital Supply Store
- Mental Health Counseling
- Nurse Registry
- Occupational Therapy
- Osteopathic Physicians
- Physicians Office
- Plastic Surgeons
- Skilled Nursing Facilities
- Speech Therapy
- Substance Abuse Counseling
- Telemedicine Business Insurance
Health care providers are the most trusted individuals in our society. Ironically, they are the same ones who can do the greatest harm. They actually have the right to invade our bodies with knives and to poison us with chemicals - all in the name of health care and with the goal of relieving our symptoms and hopefully bringing about a cure.
While the actions of these professionals normally benefit us, insurance coverage must be available for the times when mistakes happen and things go wrong. These professionals and their facilities have extensive property exposures that are becoming more and more intricate and whose values are increasing exponentially.
The 'one size fits all' approach that once could have applied to insurance for health care providers and their facilities no longer applies.
Professional liability offers protection against claims of malpractice for all sums that the medical professional becomes legally obligated to pay as damages because of rendering or failing to render professional services.
Professional and medical malpractice exposures are the most expensive and difficult of all exposures for health care providers. The commercial general liability policy excludes these exposures so separate coverage is needed. Most professional liability policies are written on a claims-made basis and, as a result, tail coverage and retroactive dates are important coverage issues to be aware of when evaluating the insured’s coverage needs and comparing coverages.
The coverage provided is often called medical malpractice. For decades, many involved in the health care field and insurance companies that provide insurance coverage to providers have stated that malpractice lawsuits have created an ongoing crisis of restricting insurance availability, due to loss of insurance companies that write the coverage and significant rate increases.
As a result, state legislatures have taken the following actions to address the situation:
Imposed a dollar limitation of liability for malpractice suits.
Modified statutes of limitation to limit the number of years that a suit may be brought against a physician following a negligent act.
Modified when the statute of limitations takes effect. An example is beginning from a negligent act's occurrence rather than from its discovery.
Passed laws to modify tort law procedures and doctrines that relate to malpractice.
Because of differences in law by state it is important to know the states in which the covered health care providers are licensed and regularly practice. Some health care providers may practice in multiple states because of their particular specialty, their reputation or the demand for their services. Some hospitals may have ownership in facilities or provide services to patients that are outside of their main location state.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Business Income and Extra Expense, Employee Dishonesty, Money and Securities, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Physicians and Surgeons Floater, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits, Professional, Umbrella, Hired and Non-owned Auto & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Earthquake, Equipment Breakdown, Flood, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices, Business Automobile Liability and Physical Damage and Stop Gap Liability.
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Also find Alaska insurance agents & brokers and learn about Alaska small business insurance requirements for general liability, business property, commercial auto & workers compensation including AK business insurance costs. Call us (907) 531-9001.