Michelle M. Ursini Appointed Director of Marketing and Business Development at CMIC Group

CMIC, a medical professional liability insurance company, is pleased to announce that Michelle M. Ursini of Wethersfield, Conn., previously a senior underwriter with the company, has been promoted to director of marketing and business development.

Ursini has more than a decade of experience in the professional liability insurance industry. Before joining CMIC Group in 2016, she worked directly for a brokerage firm, overseeing key accounts and working closely with the firm’s clients. Prior to that, she spent several years as the underwriting manager for Oceanus Insurance Co. In addition to her underwriting duties, Ursini also served as a liaison to the insurance carrier’s broker partners, as well as the company’s physician insureds.

“Shelly’s in-depth knowledge of underwriting practices and expertise in territory expansion will not only enable us to continue to grow our membership, but to accomplish many of the Company’s strategic goals as well,” said Stephen J. Gallant, chief executive officer of CMIC Group. “Likewise, her extensive experience collaborating with brokers will prove to be an asset as we expand our geographic presence as well as strengthen our bonds with our current broker partners.”

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Cooperative of American Physicians to Share Insights on Practice Risk Management at 2018 Association of Dermatology Administrators & Managers (ADAM) Conference

With the myriad issues that face the ever-evolving medical care sector, medical practices are likewise facing multiple legislative and regulatory headwinds in approaches to office risk management. To help bring these issues into clearer focus for practice managers, the Cooperative of American Physicians, Inc. (CAP) will be represented on a panel at the 2018 Association of Dermatology Administrators & Managers (ADAM) Conference, to be held in San Diego February 12–14, 2018.

Carole Lambert, MPA, RN, CAP’s vice president for practice optimization, will be speaking at ADAM’s annual conference on February 12. Joining her will be Randie Minovitz BSN RN, director of ambulatory risk management at PIH Health Whittier, a nonprofit regional health network serving Southern California. Their presentation, entitled “Risk Management Forever—Because Everything Old is New Again,” will outline key takeaways for medical risk management professionals as they navigate and continue to develop their strategies for effective practice administration:

  • Describe four elements in successfully managing risk in dermatology.
  • Identify three forces impacting healthcare risk management.
  • List three activities that are central to mitigating risk.
  • Outline a simple strategy for evaluating, mitigating and managing risk.

“Given the daily barrage of regulatory acronyms and issues that compete for risk managers’ time, it is more crucial than ever for healthcare professionals and practices to have a clear set of guidelines activities in place,” Lambert said. “At the same time, as the name of our panel suggests, these are techniques that are tried, tested, and have shown promising results for our member practices.”

“Ambulatory care in particular is an area for medical practices to grow and examine their risk management procedures,” added Randie Minovitz, a registered nurse with more than 35 years of experience in hospital and ambulatory settings. “As healthcare systems increasingly turn to ambulatory care as a way to minimize unnecessary hospitalizations, having a risk management outline in place at such practices will be paramount.”

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Coverys Syndicate 1975 Appoints Stephanie Crowther as Underwriter

Coverys Syndicate 1975 has appointed Stephanie Crowther as underwriter for its specialist medical professional liability account beginning February 2018.

Syndicate 1975 commenced underwriting on Jan. 1, 2018, and is a source of London-based insurance and reinsurance capacity. Syndicate 1975 provides traditional and innovative coverage for physicians, hospitals and other providers of healthcare. This is coupled with risk management and mitigation solutions to improve margins and increase patient safety.

Crowther obtained a law degree from Exeter University and previously served as underwriter for healthcare and cyber business with Hiscox Syndicates Limited.

“We are delighted that Stephanie is joining us to work alongside Keith Bryceland to help build out the Coverys offering at Lloyd’s and to work closely with the group’s activity in the United States in the medical professional liability sector,” said Robin McCoy, CEO, Coverys Managing Agency.

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Constellation Announces Strategic Collaboration with CliftonLarsonAllen

Constellation, Inc., a partnership of mutual liability insurers and healthcare service organizations, announced a strategic collaboration with CliftonLarsonAllen (CLA), a healthcare professional services firm whose clients include more than 8,300 healthcare and senior living clients across the country.

“Our agreement with CLA marks a significant milestone as we expand our offerings beyond managing the risk of medical professional liability,” said Bill McDonough, CEO of Constellation. “CLA is a reliable advisor who understands the business of health care. As CLA puts it, its advisors ‘transform complexity into opportunity’ by considering its clients’ financial, strategic and operational needs. CLA’s deep industry specialization and ability to integrate with customers’ existing programs and products, combined with its desire to truly understand and help its customers make it an excellent fit for Constellation. We are proud to help connect CLA with our physician, hospital, and long-term care clients.”

“The passion and advisory approach that Constellation provides to its client base facilitated a collaborative alignment which we foresee as very beneficial to the clients we will serve together in the future,” said Jeff Vrieze, chief industry officer of CLA’s healthcare practice. “Forging this relationship with a trusted medical professional liability firm with an excellent reputation will allow us to demonstrate our capabilities to a larger healthcare network.”

Under the agreement, Constellation member companies MMIC, UMIA and Arkansas Mutual Insurance Company will market CLA’s portfolio of healthcare services in the 16 states where it currently conducts business. Those states include Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

The collaboration marks Constellation’s second expansion of services beyond medical professional liability insurance. Last year, it introduced the Physician Empowerment Suite, an online platform designed to help healthcare providers deliver a better patient experience and improve operational performance and effectiveness.

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NORCAL Group Foundation Awards First Grants

The NORCAL Group Foundation, dedicated to improving healthcare in local communities, announces its inaugural group of grant recipients.

Seven organizations have been awarded funding for initiatives and programs that support any of three critical healthcare areas: patient care, patient safety and physician wellness. The seven recipients are:

•    Anchorage Project Access (Anchorage, Alaska), a physician-led volunteer network that serves low-income and uninsured Alaskans, received a grant to support Anchorage Project Access, which provides low-income, uninsured adults primary care and dental services.

•    Asian Pacific Health Care Venture, Inc. (Los Angeles, Calif.) was awarded a grant to support their Caregiver Support Group and workshops for managing diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The programs are presented through their wellness center that provides comprehensive healthcare services to more than 14,000 patients who speak limited English and are at or below 200% of Federal poverty level.

•    California Public Protection and Public Health (Fresno, Calif.), which provides physicians risk monitoring to ensure patient safety and training on physician wellness topics for respective practices and facilities, received a grant to support a series of statewide- training sessions on physician wellness and combatting physician burnout.

•    Community Service, Education and Research fund of the SEDMS (Sacramento, Calif.) was awarded a grant to support training opportunities for the SMART Medical Clearance program. This program, created by the Sierra Sacramento Valley Medical Society, is designed to standardize clearance protocol for psychiatric patients in emergency departments.

•    Project Angel Food (Los Angeles, Calif.), the only non-profit in Southern California providing free meals and nutrition consultations for people living with critical illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, HIV/AIDS and renal failure, received a grant to expand its services. Funding will help grow the program which currently serves more than 2,100 clients and delivers over 550,000 meals annually.

•    The San Diego County Medical Society Foundation (San Diego, Calif.) received a grant to support Project Access, which provides low-income, uninsured adults primary and specialty care services for disabilities and potentially life-threatening conditions. Community health activities provided through this program include free immunizations, blood pressure screening, breast screening and mammography, and health education.

•    San Francisco Community Clinic Consortium (San Francisco, Calif.) received a grant for its Street Outreach Services (SOS) program, a mobile medical clinic that brings urgent and preventative medical care to homeless at various locations. They connect patients to primary and specialized care, mental health and substance abuse services, benefits and housing programs, and more. Program is staffed by physicians, nurses, outreach workers and volunteers.

“We are extremely proud to support such worthy organizations and programs that enhance patient and physician wellness in our communities,” said Joy Corso, president of the NORCAL Group Foundation. “NORCAL Mutual has a 40-plus-year legacy of giving and advocacy in the communities we serve, and the Foundation further strengthens our commitment and support of the healthcare community.”

The NORCAL Group Foundation will open its next application cycle in March 2018. For information on the Foundation’s grant application process and eligibility, visit www.norcalgroupfoundation.org.

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Cooperative of American Physicians Announces Retirement of William J. West; Daniel Cavanaugh Ascends to Vice President of Membership Development

The Cooperative of American Physicians, Inc. (CAP) announced the promotion of Daniel Cavanaugh to vice president of membership development following the retirement of William J. West (Bill) on February 15. West steps down from his role after more than two decades of successfully helping to foster membership growth, while Cavanaugh succeeds to the position and will continue to facilitate access to top-rated medical professional liability coverage.

“Both Bill and Dan have excelled in this department,” said Sarah Pacini, CAP chief executive. “Not only have they committed to meeting standards of excellence, but they have also influenced their teams to aim towards progress and continue to care for physicians all over California.”

In his most recent role as vice president of membership development, West was a driving force in bringing CAP’s medical professional liability offerings to a wider audience of solo and group practices in the California Market – tripling CAP’s Mutual Protection Trust (MPT) membership participation from 3,879 to 11,746. West also created and implemented a unique marketing strategy to dominate competitors, adding millions in new business for the organization.

Cavanaugh harbored a strong relationship with CAP as a broker before joining the company and eventually becoming assistant vice president of membership development. In this position, he leveraged his expertise to spearhead CAP’s Affinity Group program expansion and partnered with various IPAs, Physician Networks and Physician Purchasing Organizations around the state to introduce their members to CAP’s malpractice coverage.

“It has been an honor to work alongside Bill West. His talent and dedication are a motivation to continue to provide meaningful coverage solutions for medical groups and physicians in a creative manner,” Cavanaugh said. “I look forward to taking on my new role, influencing the direction of our organization and acting as a mentor to my sales team.”

Cavanaugh has established his thought leadership in malpractice coverage and its effect on the modern physician, and has been published and quoted in outlets including Medscape, Journal of Medical Practice Management and Medical Economics. He is also the 2018 president-elect of the California Medical Group Management Association, effective in April 2018, and holds a B.S in Journalism from the University of Kansas.

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ProAssurance Promotes Edward L. Rand to Chief Operating Officer

ProAssurance Corp. announced that it has promoted Edward L. “Ned” Rand, Jr., to chief operating officer. In this newly created position Rand will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of ProAssurance, reporting directly to Stan Starnes, chairman and chief executive officer. Rand has served for 13 years as the chief financial officer for ProAssurance and he will continue in that role for the near future.

“We are excited that Ned will be moving in to this new position, allowing me to focus my time and energy on the company’s strategic priorities and long-term business development,” Starnes said. “I have great confidence in Ned, who has been instrumental to the success of ProAssurance during his 13 year tenure. He is a skilled executive, a trusted adviser and someone who exemplifies the ‘ProAssurance Way.’ Ned and I will work closely together as we continue creating value for our employees, customers and shareholders.”

According to ProAssurance, its line of business leaders will report directly to Rand and through him to Starnes, and each line of business leader will continue to exercise broad responsibilities for the success of their respective line of business.

“As ProAssurance continues to evolve as a healthcare-centric specialty insurer, our management structure must also evolve,” Starnes said, addressing any concerns over his future with the medical liability insurance company. “I am committed to maintaining my current position for the foreseeable future, which is why I signed an extension of my five-year employment contract in June 2017. In my discussions with the Board on this matter, we agreed this was a means of extending, not limiting, my career at ProAssurance.”

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Edward J. Carroll Promoted to Vice President of Underwriting at ISMIE Mutual

ISMIE Mutual Insurance Co. announced the promotion of Edward J. Carroll, JD, to vice president of underwriting. Carroll will oversee business underwriting for ISMIE and its subsidiaries.

Carroll joined ISMIE Mutual in early 2017 when he was appointed as director of underwriting – new segments. He was brought on to lead product development, distribution management, implementation of rating and pricing models, and underwriting for ISMIE’s expansion strategy. During his brief tenure with ISMIE, the subsidiary ISMIE Indemnity acquired business in a dozen new states.

Carroll began his insurance career at Chubb Specialty Insurance in 2000. Prior to joining ISMIE, he was director of underwriting at Connecticut-based CMIC, a medical professional liability insurance company. He is a graduate of Georgetown University.

“ISMIE is fortunate to have Ed on our team. His promotion is an acknowledgement of his significant contributions to ISMIE’s expansion and business development growth,” said Paul H. DeHaan, MD,ISMIE vice chairman. “We also wish Al Allphin well in his retirement. Al has been an important ISMIE team member for more than 30 years and his leadership will be missed.”

“These are exciting times for ISMIE, and Ed’s the right person to assume underwriting leadership,” said Wayne de Nazarie, ISMIE executive vice president. “He’ll play a key role in strengthening our partnerships with brokers and producers to further grow our imprint across the U.S.”

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Healthcare Providers Insurance Exchange (HPIX) Explains Liquidation Plans

The following is a statement — dated Dec. 18, 2017 — from Healthcare Providers Insurance Exchange (HPIX) regarding its liquidation:

“In 2015, we determined it was in the best interests of our subscribers to voluntarily cease operations and begin an orderly run-off of the company’s liabilities. Our plan to settle these liabilities was based on independent actuarial projections of their ultimate costs and was approved by our regulators. Since 2015, we have both resolved a significant number of claims and paid indemnity and defense costs for those claims.

“We continue to receive new claims from our subscribers and the projection of the ultimate costs of all claims has increased dramatically since 2015. Our most recent independent actuarial projections, as of September 30, 2017, indicate that we may not have sufficient assets to meet our liabilities. After consideration of our options, we have agreed to enter into an orderly liquidation supervised by the Pennsylvania Insurance Department (PID).

“A court-appointed liquidator will take control of the company’s assets and seek to resolve our remaining liabilities. The liquidator will provide additional information and instructions about this process in the near future.

“We understand this development may be concerning to HPIX’s subscribers and many supporters. Please be assured that we will cooperate fully with the PID and liquidator to achieve the best outcome for all parties.

“Once appointed, the liquidator will provide additional information and will be able to address any questions or concerns you may have.”

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CMIC Group CFO, Manny Zervos, Announces Retirement; Michael Conneely, CMIC Group Director of Finance, to Assume Role of CFO

CMIC Group announced today that its chief financial officer, Emmanuel (Manny) Zervos, will retire at the end of the year. He has served as CMIC’s CFO since 1989.

“Manny has served CMIC Group for decades with unstinting grace and professionalism, in addition to good cheer,” said John Hornby, MD, chairman and president of the CMIC Board of Directors. “Most notably, he has overseen CMIC’s geographical expansion, including the formation of the CMIC Risk Retention Group, and subsequently CMIC Group, with great distinction, likewise helping to amass the company’s present financial strength. His contributions will have a lasting impact on the company.”                                       

The CFO role will be assumed by Michael Conneely, the company’s current director of finance. Conneely has more than 25 years of business and accounting experience, including 17 years in the insurance industry. He spent the most recent 14 years in financial roles supporting several business lines at Travelers Insurance. Prior to that, he worked in a variety of financial roles in the insurance industry, including roles with a prominent reinsurer, as well as seven years with Deloitte & Touche.

“Mike’s extensive and varied experience in the financial industry is an immense asset to the company,” Hornby said. “In addition, I’m certain his leadership, vision and financial guidance will not only uphold CMIC Group’s already pristine reputation of financial diligence, but strengthen it for many years to come.”

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