Policyholder Services

Should I stop performing elective procedures during the COVID-19 outbreak?

OMIC recommends that you strongly consider the advice of the CDC, AAO, and subspecialty societies when determining what treatment to cancel or postpone. We also advise that you comply with any legal mandates from your State Department of Health or other governmental bodies. Some states (e.g., CO, MN, OH, WA, and NJ) have ordered the suspension of all non-essential surgeries and medical procedures. The AAO published a recommendation 3/18/2020 to immediately cease providing any treatment other than urgent or emergent care. The AAO guidance reminds us that urgency or what might be essential surgery is “determined by physician judgment and must always take into account individual patient medical and social circumstances.” Cataract and refractive surgery, blepharoplasty, cosmetic Botox, etc., are considered elective procedures. As you know, patients 65+ are most at risk. We cannot advise you about what might happen if you decide to proceed with elective procedures in light of the above recommendations against doing so. Your medical professional liability insurance with OMIC covers you for your direct patient treatment, which includes your professional judgment about when to perform treatment. Whether OMIC would cover a specific claim depends upon the type of claim, specific allegations, and whether any exclusions apply. This is uncharted territory.

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