1. What is an RPG?
An RPG is a Risk Purchasing Group. RPGs came into existence as a result of the federal Risk Retention Act of 1986. An RPG is an association of insurance buyers with a common identity who form an organization to purchase liability insurance on a group basis.
2. I am currently insured with TDC. Why would I join the VPE risk purchasing group and what benefits would there be in doing so?
By joining the VPE RPG you are expected to receive an additional premium discount to your current TDC policy of at least 5%. You will have free access to and be able to participate in the loss control programs with CME credits specifically designed for the physicians of our community.
3. My current malpractice policy just renewed. Should I wait until my next renewal to get a quote through the program?
A premium quote is relatively easy to obtain through the VPE RPG. Unless you have “open” or recently reported claims, we would encourage you to get an indication now rather than waiting for your next renewal.We will assist you in processing a refund of the unearned portion of your current premium.
4. What’s in it for VPE? Do they or Valley Health receive anything based on my participation?
VPE and Valley Health are not receiving monetary benefits for extending or making this offer available to our community physicians. The $25 administration fee offsets the cost of processing applications. The risk purchasing group is an opportunity to provide the physician community with a meaningful and measureable benefit on an issue that affects all physicians. The VPE RPG should also help stabilize malpractice premiums over the long run benefiting both VPE and participating community physicians.
5. How will my policy be rated? Will claims from other groups impact my premiums?
The only rating effect will be the additional premium discount made available through the VPE risk purchasing group. You will continue to be rated based on your experience as well as the discretionary opportunities that Virginia allows in developing malpractice premiums. As the malpractice market transitions, we believe that the group effect will minimize potential adverse underwriting and pricing decisions that can come in a more difficult insurance environment.
6. What happens if I want to leave the VPE risk purchasing group?
If you leave the RPG, you would lose the 5% group credit at your next renewal as well as access to the other services that are developed specifically for VPE.
7. My current policy has “free-tail” provisions. how does the TDC policy address “free-tail”?
Like many malpractice insurance companies, TDC includes “free-tail” provisions when you retire completely from the practice of medicine or as a result of death or disability.
8. What is the goal of the VPE RPG?
While physicians will see immediate premium savings, the overall goal of the VPE RPG is one of a long term nature. That goal is to provide a long term, stable market for medical professional liability in our physician community. Malpractice premiums have been depressed in recent years due to market conditions. Moving forward, as premiums begin to increase, the VPE RPG will help to keep premiums low and avoid large increases that may be seen in the malpractice marketplace. One way this will be accomplished is by forming an advisory board made up of RPG participating physicians. The advisory board will monitor the RPG and help set up a loss control program that will help to improve the practice of medicine in our community.
9. Can the VPE RPG cover my entity and ancillary personnel?
Yes. The VPE RPG can cover both the entity and ancillary personnel of the physicians. Entities and NPs, RNs,PA s, etc. can share limits with the physicians for no charge. If separate limits are desired, they are available for a charge.
10. Is there a charge associated with joining the VPE RPG?
There will be a nominal charge of $25 per physician to join the VPE RPG. This charge will offset administrative fees in maintaining the RPG.
11. What information will VPE and other participating physicians have access to? Will my personal information be shared with VPE or other participating physicians?
VPE and all participating physicians will have access to aggregate claims data of the RPG and evaluation of claim trends. The RPG and participating physicians will not have access to any personal claims or patient information.
12. Under what situations can the RPG terminate my participation?
First, as a condition to participation in the RPG, each Physician must pay their premiums. There will be no changes in your premium payment provisions. TDC invoices the Physician or the Physician’s Practice in the usual and customary installment fashion. Neither VPE nor the RPG has access to your payment information or any other data for that matter.
Secondly, any termination of the contract between the Physician and the RPG has nothing to do with your insurance or the termination of your insurance policy. VPE or the RPG can’t cancel you TDC insurance policy or cause it to be cancelled. TDC would be the insurer. Should the RPG agreement be cancelled for any reason, you will simply lose your 5% discount. Your policy will remain in force. Specifically, the RPG agreement states that participation in the RPG could be affected by such things as standards of professional licensing or credentialing. Any criteria for participation applies to the entire group, so an individual physician could not be singled out.
13. Will termination from the RPG affect my insurance coverage?
Terminating your membership in the RPG will not terminate your insurance coverage. The TDC policy for each physician is completely portable. The policy is in the physician’s name. If a physician leaves or terminates with the RPG, the Physician takes his/her policy with him/her. The only effect of termination by either party from the RPG is the loss of the 5% discount associated with the RPG.
14. Why do Physician RPG members have to agree to hold the BPE RPG harmless for any acts?
The RPG is providing a service to physicians under the Participation Agreement, and the physician’s indemnification language is therefore appropriate. Because the physician is not being asked to provide services to the RPG under the Participation Agreement, the indemnification language from the RPG’s perspective is not necessary.
15. Will I need to get the VPE RPG approval to continue my medical professional liability coverage in the event I decide to merge or sell my group?
Your participation in the RPG has no effect on continuing your coverage with TDC should you decide to leave the RPG, sell your practice, or merge with another practice. Your medical professional liability coverage is yours and as previously stated, it is completely and totally portable. No approval is needed to continue your coverage should you decide to merge or sell your practice.
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