by Gerald Zarlengo, MD, Chairman & CEO, COPIC Insurance Company

At COPIC, there is one question that we consistently ask ourselves – what more can we do? It’s a question that reminds us to think in new and different ways about how we live out our mission of “improving medicine in the communities we serve.” It’s also a process that starts with listening to our insureds and the challenges they are facing while being actively engaged in health care, from one-on-one conversations with a pediatrician on the Western Slope to closely following health care policy issues at the Capitol.

We know that our insureds look to us for coverage that offers value and protection, but we also know that they deserve more than just a standard insurance policy. COPIC recognizes that the ideas that emerge out of the “what more can we do” discussions need to be shaped into support that provides meaningful benefits. The last two years have emphasized the increased complexity of medicine, the sizable demands placed on physicians, and the importance of providing trusted support to them.

The following examples highlight ways that COPIC is looking forward to offering more support and doing what we can to help the health care community.

More support with specialty-specific education

While we see some similar issues across medical specialties, we know that each specialty has its own unique challenges. A key aspect in the development of our educational resources is looking at how we provide specialty-specific knowledge. These efforts include analyzing and sharing data about claims trends by medical specialty, virtual meetings that bring together peer physicians for interactive discussions, podcast episodes geared toward specific specialties, and courses/seminars informed by our faculty advisors who represent different specialties and practice settings.

More support during a lawsuit

There are two key programs that we continuously highlight to insureds who are facing a lawsuit. The first is COPIC’s Care for the Caregiver® program which helps insured providers deal with the emotional stress of a lawsuit. The program pairs the provider with a specially trained “peer” practitioner who has personally gone through the legal process. These peers offer a shared perspective to address difficult feelings, and more importantly, their responsibility is to listen with a comforting sense of support. The second program is our PR/Reputation Support. We know that a lawsuit often comes with negative media coverage and attempts to disparage a physician’s character. To address these situations, COPIC has partnered with a strategic communications firm that can help manage how to proactively address these situations and protect your reputation.

More support through legislative advocacy

Some of COPIC’s work to improve medicine happens in collaboration with our colleagues at the Colorado Medical Society and Colorado Hospital Association. COPIC believes that taking an active role in advocating on legislative issues allows the health care community to devote its resources to quality improvement and patient care. Our year-round, state-level legislative advocacy efforts center on monitoring initiatives that may impact the tort environment, change regulatory oversight, create unreasonable burdens on health care delivery, or reduce access to quality health care. Our goal is to provide our insureds a sense of assurance in knowing that COPIC is keeping an eye on legislative issues so they can focus on their patients.

More support through grant funding

The COPIC Medical Foundation works to improve health care outcomes through grant funding. Each year, organizations can apply for grant funding for initiatives that align with the goals of the foundation. The focus area of our 2022 funding cycle is reducing fragmentation across care settings. The foundation is accepting applications Nov. 1, 2021 through Jan. 14, 2022. View more information and download the grant requirements and application at www.callcopic.com/about-copic/copic-medical-foundation. ■


Season Two: Within Normal Limits Podcast

Our podcast, Within Normal Limits: Navigating Medical Risks, is back for its second season. Eric Zacharias, MD, COPIC’s director of medical education, continues to host the podcast and engage in interesting conversations with other physicians and experts about timely issues. Each episode is 20-30 minutes and focuses on a topic informed by COPIC’s experience and trends we are seeing in health care. Some of the episode topics featured this season include:

  • Informed refusal with patients who disagree with care recommendations
  • Handling unsolicited tests
  • Terminating a patient relationship

Within Normal Limits is available on popular platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and Amazon. You can also go to www.callcopic.com/wnlpodcast for more information.


Categories: Communications, Colorado Medicine, COPIC Comment