What do I do if a client presents with an injury?
Performing laser treatments, like laser hair removal, poses specific, high risks. Even if non-invasive and performed correctly, the treatment can develop skin reactions like burns and rashes and other adverse biological effects. In the case of an injury occurring to your client whilst receiving treatment, or your client presenting with an injury after their treatment, the injured person must be referred to a medical practitioner or professional immediately.
In any case, it’s important that you record the details of the injury and any communications you have with the client. Do not admit liability to anything or offer any reimbursements or compensation at this stage. Instead, contact your insurer as soon as you can, and they will guide you through the process of what to do next.
Depending on which state you are practicing in, as part of your licensing conditions you may need to report the incident to your state radiation regulator.
What if a claim is made against me?
It can be difficult for you if something goes wrong, and a client brings a compensation claim. It can cause mental, emotional, and financial stress and could also have a devastating impact on the reputation of your business. A claim against you could cause significant disruption to your business, resulting in a loss of revenue and you could potentially go bankrupt.
If a claim is issued against you, it is important that you do not respond at all at this stage, and that your first step is to contact your insurer for advice on what you should do next.
Additional protocol to help protect yourself and your business:
- Thorough pre-treatment consultation and examination to identify any potential risks or contraindications. This is also the part where you obtain the client’s medical history.
- Obtain clients’ consent in writing by having them sign a consent form.
- Patch test a small area of skin to determine the best laser to use and what grade of laser energy is required to achieve the best results. Checking client suitability includes assessing the client’s skin type, hair colour, etc.
- Education – discuss the cosmetic procedure, associated risks, and expected outcomes with your client, so that any concerns can be addressed, and they know exactly what to expect.
- Provide personal protective equipment for both treatment providers and clients.
- Certificates – ensure that your qualifications meet your state requirements.
- Licencing requirements – licencing requirements differ in each jurisdiction. Ensure that you hold the appropriate medical device licence or licences for laser operators and laser operations applicable to your business.
- If you have staff who are contracting to you, check that they have their own Professional Indemnity and Medical Malpractice insurance in place.
What insurance do I need as a laser technician or business owner?
The minimum required insurance policies for anyone working as a laser technician are Professional Indemnity and Medical Malpractice Insurances. These policies will cover you for any advice that you give your client and the type of treatment that you perform.
As an official employee in someone’s business, you should be covered under their insurance policies. It is strongly recommended that you check this with your employer to make sure those policies are in place, and you are protected. As a contractor, you will need to have your own insurances.
Whether you are doing all of the work yourself, or you have staff who are either employees of your business or are contracting to you, you will need to ensure you have all bases covered when it comes to your insurance, as at the end of the day it will be your business and reputation that is on the line if an unfortunate event is to occur.
In addition to Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurances, you will need a Business Pack to cover your stock, contents, and very importantly your machinery. Laser machines are a high-ticket item, and it could be very costly to your business if your machines broke down or were stolen and you had to cover the costs of repairing or replacing them.
Another policy to consider depending on what state in Australia you are located is workers’ compensation coverage for your employees. It will protect both them and your business in case they are injured in the workplace. Technicians could accidentally burn themselves whilst performing skin or laser treatment sessions or could obtain injuries in other ways whilst at work, and a worker’s compensation policy may help with medical bills and lost wages whilst they recover.
How to get the right insurance cover?
Sparrow Insurance has been insuring all types of laser machines and treatments for many years, we understand the market and the need for suitable insurance. We also understand how tricky things can get when finding the right insurance policies, and with the unique risks that come with handling laser treatments, we can help identify which policies you need.
For expert advice and guidance, all you need to do is contact Sparrow Insurance directly for an easy quotation process. Call today on (07) 5502 8326 or get an instant quote online here.