Pharmacy Liability Insurance Alaska Policy Information
Pharmacy Liability Insurance Alaska. The role of pharmacies continues to expand, including providing consultations and vaccinations. With this expansion comes increased exposure for liability claims. In a recent claim study, the two most common allegations against pharmacies were wrong drug and wrong dose. Together, these two allegations comprised 75% of all lawsuits against pharmacies.
Drug stores sell prescriptions and over-the-counter medications to customers. Operations can range from the small pharmacy that only fills prescriptions, to retail stores that offer pharmacy services along with the sale of sundries, to huge super or discount drug stores that sell all varieties of general merchandise.
Pharmacy's can be locally owned, attached to and related to physicians' offices, clinics, or hospitals, or part of a regional or national chain or franchise. Medical supplies and equipment rentals may be part of the operations. Lunch counters or cafeterias may be on premises. Food items or snacks may be sold. Some will offer a variety of services that have little or no relationship to drug sales, such as cosmetic or beauty supplies or even beauty shops, shoe repair, or key duplication. Alcoholic beverages may be sold for off-premises consumption. Some may offer health care services, including sports physicals and the administration of vaccines.
Most pharmacy liability insurance Alaska policies are in the form of a Business Owners Policy (BOP). A BOP typically offers small businesses coverage for property and liability risks in one package.
Pharmacy liability insurance Alaska protects your store from lawsuits with rates as low as $97/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now..
Common Coverages For Pharmacy Business Insurance
Commercial General Liability - This coverage offers protection against the risks of running your pharmacy business. This provides protection against claims of bodily injury liability, property damage liability and even personal injury and advertising exposures for which your business may be liable. Slip-and-fall is a common type of claim.
Errors and Omissions Insurance - When running your AK pharmacy, it is important to consider the implications of other types of errors that can occur. Errors and omissions insurance - also known as professional liability can help provide you with the reassurance that you are covered for mistakes related to improper dosage or incorrect instructions with prescription drugs.
AK Business Auto - Commercial vehicle insurance is needed for your pharmacy if use any vehicles to run errands, pick up or drop off drugs or other good for sale.
Equipment Breakdown - Most AK pharmacies rely on computers and other specialized equipment to obtain details about their customers' medications and illnesses. If this equipment breaks down it can be costly in the form of suspended business operations as well as repair or replacement. A pharmacy liability insurance Alaska policy can protect you from having to shoulder those costs.
Employee Dishonesty - This protects your business from losses due to embezzlement, fraud and other forms of employee dishonesty. Because of the higher risks of addiction for certain opioid drugs, stolen prescription drugs are not a rare occurrence is pharmacies.
Data Breach - Because health-related businesses like pharmacies and drug stores must store a great deal of confidential patient information in electronic files, your customers could be at risk for identity theft or fraud if your system is ever penetrated by criminals. This pharmacy liability insurance Alaska coverage can reimburse you if you incur charges related to notifying your patients of a breach, offering them credit-monitoring services, recovering your own damaged electronic data and more.
How Does A Pharmacy Insurance Policy Work?
The aim of a pharmacy liability insurance Alaska policy is to ensure that if a claim is filed against you, you are protected - whether it be in court or at work. Some policies will cover attorney fees and other legal expenses, pay you for lost wages while taking time off work to defend yourself, and even offer reimbursement for licensing board issues.
What To Look For When Purchasing Drug Store Commercial Insurance
When purchasing a pharmacy liability insurance Alaska policy, people should always buy from an agent who understands and can explain all the details of the policy and is also familiar with the pharmacy business. Another thing to look for is who and what is insured under the policy. This is important as the pharmacy owner will want to know who exactly is insured under their policy and what they are covered against.
Alaska Drug Store's And Pharmacies' Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure comes from slips and falls due to public access to the premises. Floor coverings must be in good condition with no frayed or worn spots on carpet and no cracks or holes in flooring. Steps and uneven floor surfaces should be prominently marked. Sufficient exits must be provided and be well marked, with backup lighting systems in case of power failure. Extra care must be taken to provide adequate aisle space and waiting areas as some customers may be sick or have impaired mobility.
The rental of medical equipment can result in additional injuries to customers who already have health problems. Equipment must be inspected and maintained after each use. Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slips and falls. If the business is open after dark, there should be adequate lighting and appropriate security for the area. Personal injury exposure can arise from invasion of customers' privacy should confidential medical information be released to unauthorized sources.
There is also the exposure from apprehending and detaining suspected shoplifters. The use of closed-circuit camera systems prevents such incidents from evolving into a "he said, she said" situation. Employees must be trained to deal with all such delicate situations properly.
Products and professional exposure are tied together. The training, experience, background, and expertise of anyone handling and dispensing of drugs are very high concerns and need thorough review. Most states require that only health care professionals with appropriate credentials be permitted to issue prescriptions. However, recent legislation has opened prescription-writing to druggists in certain states, substantially increasing the exposure to loss in those states.
Some drugstores now offer limited health care services including screenings and the administrating of vaccines. If performed by an employee, proper licensure is required. If performed by a vendor, certificates of insurance showing professional liability are required.
If liquor is sold, employees must be trained to verify that customers are not underage and to recognize signs of intoxication.
Workers compensation exposure is due to lifting which can cause back injury, hernias, sprains, and strains, and from slips and falls. Employees should be provided with safety equipment, trained on proper handling techniques, and have conveying devices available to assist with heavy lifting. Shelves should be easily accessible for storage. Stepladders should be available.
Housekeeping in storage areas is vital to prevent trips and falls. In any retail business, hold-ups are possible. Employees should be trained to respond in a prescribed manner. Cooking operations can result in cuts, slips, falls, and burns. Delivery drivers may be subject to robbery if they transport high value street drugs.
Property exposure may be low if ignition sources are limited to electrical wiring, heating and cooling equipment. Oxygen tanks can explode and should be kept away from heat sources. If there is food service, cooking equipment must be properly protected with fire extinguishers close at hand. If a fire should occur, the loss could be substantial as the FDA requires most drug and alcohol stocks exposed to fire or smoke to be destroyed due to the possibility of contamination.
Theft is a major exposure due to the amount of narcotics and other popular street drugs kept on hand, liquor and tobacco products. Individual items may be shoplifted. Appropriate security measures must be taken including physical barriers to prevent entrance after hours and an alarm system that reports directly to a central station or the police department.
Business interruption exposure can be high if alternative facilities are not available after a loss.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty and theft of money and securities either from holdup or safe burglary. Background checks should be conducted on all employees handling money. There must be separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and handling bank statements. Receipting, inventory monitoring, and regular auditing are important.
Money should be regularly collected from cash drawers and moved away from the collection area, preferably to a safe on premises. Bank drops should be made regularly to prevent a buildup of cash on the premises. Narcotics should be inaccessible to customers and non-pharmacy employees and under constant surveillance to reduce the possibility of inventory shortage.
Inland marine exposures are from accounts receivable if the store offers credit, computers to transact sales and monitor inventory, and valuable papers and records due to customers' and vendors' records. Backup copies of all records, including computer records, should be made and stored off premises.
Business auto exposure may be limited to hired non-owned for employees running errands. If delivery services are provided, all employees driving vehicles must have valid licenses and acceptable MVRs. Vehicles must be regularly maintained with records kept.
How Do I Find Affordable AK Pharmacy Liability Insurance?
It's hard to set a baseline rate for pharmacy insurance because it's based on a variety of factors unique to you and your company. Things like security features, liability issues, and the services that you provide will make a difference in the coverage you need, which ultimately determines your premium. Researching options and collecting quotes is your best bet before you buy.
The pharmacy industry is rapidly changing and expanding. With new and challenging practice areas come a proportional increase in exposure to professional liabilities. Pharmacy insurance is designed to safeguard your livelihood, your business, and your peace of mind.
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 Retail Insurance
Read valuable small business retail insurance policy information. In a retail business, you need to have the right type of commercial insurance coverage so that your store, employees, and inventory are protected.
- Adult Novelty
- Appliance & Electronics Store
- Art Gallery
- Bicycle Shop
- Book Store
- Bridal Shop
- Candy Confectionery Store
- Carpet Store
- Clothing Store
- Collectibles Memorabilia Store
- Convenience Store
- Cosmetics Store
- Dry Cleaning
- Equipment Rental
- Funeral Home
- Furniture Store
- Gift Store
- Hardware Store
- Home Improvement Store
- Hotel Motel
- Ice Cream Shop
- Jewelry Store
- Lingerie Store
- Luggage Store
- Music Store
- Office Supply Store
- Paint & Wallpaper Store
- Pet Store
- Pharmacy Liability
- Plumbing Supplies Fixtures Store
- Scrap Metal Dealers
- Sewing Store
- Shoe Store
- Sporting Goods Store
- Stationary Store
- Thrift Store
- Ticket Agency
- Tobacco Store
- Toy Store
- Travel Agency
- Wig Store
Retail stores are susceptible to premises liability claims because of customer traffic, but large department and specialty stores are more susceptible than most.
All retail stores have significant property exposures. The on-hand stock represents a considerable investment, but the amount on hand fluctuates seasonally. For this reason, physical damage insurance on this property must be arranged carefully. When the insured occupies a non-owned building, insurance coverage must be arranged for the insured's interest in extensive improvements and betterments made to the premises.
Crime insurance, in the form of employee theft and money and securities coverage, is also very important.
The businessowners policy was designed with retail exposures and operations in mind. For this reason alone, it should always be the first type of package coverage to consider. However, for those risks not eligible for the business owners policy program, the commercial package policy (CPP) is a practical and convenient way to combine a number of coverages into one policy.
Retail businesses generate income through interaction with customers. This interaction is also how a customer can sustain an injury and then sue the retailer for damages. Hazards, exposures and operations both on premises and off are important and must be covered, but liability the retailer may incur because of the merchandise sold must also be considered and insurance protection arranged.
Inventory or stock is the major property exposure for most retail operations. Because stock values tend to fluctuate or have significant peaks at certain times of the year, value reporting or peak season valuation options should be considered. Business income coverage, including business income from dependent properties coverage, may mean the difference between a retail operation staying in business or being forced into bankruptcy following a loss.
When the insured occupies a non-owned building, insurance coverage must be arranged for the insured’s interest in extensive improvements and betterments made to the premises.
Most retail businesses offer endless opportunities for a variety of criminal activities. For this reason, the coverages needed must be carefully evaluated. Holdup and robbery losses may be the most obvious concerns but employee theft, fraud and counterfeit money losses are also serious issues that cannot be dismissed.
Retail businesses are gaining greater exposure to international issues because of the growth in sales via the internet. As these sales increase, the added exposures faced by these retailers must be evaluated. While their operating horizons are expanding so are their potential loss exposures.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Business Income and Extra Expense, Equipment Breakdown, Employee Dishonesty, Money and Securities, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits, Umbrella, Hired and Non-owned Auto & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Earthquake, Flood, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Bailees Customers, Goods in Transit, Jewelers Block, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices, Business Auto 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.