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The ABCs of Elder Care

The ABCs of Elder Care

As the Baby Boomer population continues to age, the number of assisted living facilities in the US grows. Everything from nursing homes to independent living communities, to those facilities with respite and Alzheimer’s care are available to the more vulnerable of our citizens: aging seniors.

Working with the elderly can render these facilities vulnerable, as well. Abuse and other types of crime are easy to perpetrate, exposing elder care facilities to claims of abuse and neglect, whether it be physical or financial in nature. Here are insurance coverage options that every facility should have.

Abuse, Neglect and/or Molestation

The National Council on Aging (NCOA) reports that 1 in 10 Americans aged 60+ has been a victim of some sort of elder abuse. Seniors in assisted living facilities are particularly vulnerable to abuses of all kinds.

Coverage for abuse and molestation should be included in your assisted living facility insurance portfolio. This coverage protects the facility not only against actual cases of abuse, but also offers legal help to those facilities that may be wrongly accused of abuse.

This coverage is not included under a standard Commercial General Liability policy, as intentional acts are excluded from coverage. While it may be included under some package policies for care facilities, it may need to be purchased separately in some cases.

Board of Directors

Many assisted living facilities are run by a board of directors. As such, the board members themselves may be subject to scrutiny on a personal level due to decisions made as a board member.

Directors and Officers Liability (D&O) insurance should be in the portfolio of any company run by a board of directors. This coverage protects the company and individual board members from claims made against them for libel, slander, financial mismanagement and more. These claims may be brought by anyone from investors, creditors, customers or employees.

D&O coverage is typically a manuscript coverage, meaning it can be tailored to the specific needs of the facility or company. Contact your broker to find out how to build the D&O policy that is right for you.

Crime or Employee Theft

Any business can be subject to employee theft if employees are handling money or valuables. Assisted living facilities may have a higher incidence of crime than other businesses due to the nature of relations between employees and consumers.

Aging adults who are physically or mentally incapacitated are easy targets for scams, financial manipulations and employee theft. Employees and visitors may steal cash, checks or other valuables. Some may even become involved in long term financial schemes.

Crime coverage can protect the facility for crimes committed against the facility itself such as employee theft, burglary and robbery. This coverage can be written to protect both the facility and the patients within.  Coverage may also be tailored to extend to crimes such as medical identity theft and social security fraud.

An experienced broker from Hayes Insurance will perform a risk management analysis to help you determine what exposures your facility has and the insurance coverage to help protect your business. Call today for a free no-obligation consultation.

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