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Medicine and the Law$
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K. Kannan

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198082880

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198082880.001.0001

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Medical Insurance

Medical Insurance

(p.537) 12 Medical Insurance
Medicine and the Law

K. Kannan

Oxford University Press

Rising medical costs for treatment of illnesses and increasing awareness of the right of action against doctors for the results of medical misadventure have contributed to the growth of schemes for health insurance. Doctors take out insurance to cover the risk of medical malpractice claims against them. States encourage people to cover risk both of medical expenses and medical negligence through insurance as a measure of healthcare policy. In the USA, the State undertakes a sizeable outlay of expenses for healthcare but it looks to a shared responsibility from its citizens through compulsory health insurance. Health insurance is a contract of uberrima fides (utmost good faith) and contentious issues centre on whether there was full disclosure of past clinical history before taking out health risk cover. Renewal of policies and reluctance to underwrite risk by the insurer are the other areas of widespread litigation. Courts have come out in support of the patient/ policy holder and read down clauses disowning liability.

Keywords:   medical insurance, mediclaim policy, renewal of policy, medical malpractice insurance, uberrima fides, utmost good faith

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