Quick Facts about USF Self-Insurance Program (SIP)
1. The USF Self-Insurance Program
(SIP) team is the medical malpractice carrier for the University health care providers;
2. Sovereign immunity and how it affects you: You cannot be personally named in a suit, damages are limited in medical malpractice claims to 200/300 for state entities;
3. Identifying instances when you need to call SIP, include:
a. Receipt of a subpoena for deposition or request to speak with outside attorney;
b. Receipt of notice of a claim;
c. Patient complaint regarding care or threat to talk to an attorney;
d. Bad or unexpected outcome so as to give us notice of a potential claim;
e. Receipt of notice of DOH investigation;
f. Any other circumstances under which they believe a patient or patient family may pursue a medical malpractice cause of action.
4. For additional information on SIP, see below or read through these SIP FAQs
USF Morsani College of Medicine residents are shielded from personal liability for negligence and entitled to the protections of sovereign immunity when acting within the course and scope of their employment with the College. As a member of the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, you have professional liability protection through the USF Self-Insurance Program (SIP), which provides medical malpractice coverage for healthcare providers at University of South Florida, including faculty, residents, students, and other employees. In connection with this protection, residents have certain significant responsibilities, including full compliance with the SIP staff and SIP committees in the investigation, defense, and settlement of claims.
It is essential to the proper operation of SIP that residents give immediate notice when they become aware of any incident that may expose themselves and SIP to any loss. The failure to provide prompt notice of incidents is a prime contributing factor to being named in malpractice suits that could have been resolved well in advance of litigation. Once the SIP is notified of events or circumstances that could give rise to a claim, it can assist with timely investigation and resolution (when appropriate).
No definition of a reportable incident will cover all circumstances. In general, however, reportable incidents fall into three broad categories. Though there may appear to be no departure from accepted standard of practice, these cases should be reported:
: Any incident in which a patient has sustained an iatrogenic injury that was not anticipated by the physician or patient.
: Any of the following injuries:
- Death (unexpected or unexplained);
- Paralysis, paraplegia or quadriplegia;
- Spinal cord injury;
- Nerve injury or neurological deficit;
- Brain damage;
- Total or partial loss of limb, or loss of the use of limb;
- Sensory organ or reproductive organ loss or impairment; and
- Injury which results in disability or disfigurement.
: All incidents in the following broad categories:
- Any injury to the mother or baby associated with birth, including all shoulder dystocias;
- Any patient injury resulting from defective or nonfunctioning medical equipment;
- Any injury to parts of the anatomy not undergoing treatment;
- Any claim by a patient or family member that a patient has been medically injured;
- Any assertion by the patient or family that no consent for treatment was given;
- Any increase in morbidity due to misdiagnosis.
By far the best guideline to follow is that of medical common sense sustained by an ever-present awareness of the possibility of a claim. When in doubt, always report, and do so promptly.
The SIP office should also be notified immediately in each of the following situations:
- Receipt of any correspondence from any source, attorney, patient, or third party, making an inquiry in connection with a claim or intent to initiate malpractice action;
- Receipt by a faculty member, resident or employee of a summons, complaint, or other legal documents in connection with a claim or a DOH investigation;
- Receipt of a subpoena for medical records, a subpoena, or a requested conference from an outside attorney.
SIP staff works to protect University physicians. The office may be reached at (813) 974-8008. Further information may be obtained from:
USF Self-Insurance Programs
Tel: (813) 974-8008
Tel: (813) 974-8008