Do Registered Holistic Nutritionists Need Insurance?
As a qualified registered holistic nutritionist, you’re an expert in your field.
You’ve had experience with a wide variety of clients all with different goals, and you’ve been able to help them all.
But what if there was more to being a registered holistic nutritionist than just knowledge of holistic nutrition?
Though it might be one of the reasons you became a registered holistic nutritionist, your job extends beyond helping clients.
Knowing how to run a holistic nutrition business is just as important as your practice itself.
If you’re not sure about the fine details of running a holistic nutrition business, not to worry.
There are courses at the Edison online school of holistic nutrition that go over details like this so that you can get the most out of your business.
We spoke to Cody Macpherson, a commercial insurance broker in Toronto with Kase Insurance, to get a better understanding of your needs.
“Any time you’re giving advice for a fee, whether it’s financial, health, or anything else, you need to have errors and omissions insurance,” Macpherson says. “If someone was to take the advice you give, and something bad happens, your insurance will cover you.”
Keep reading to learn more about the insurance you need as a registered holistic nutritionist.
What Is Errors And Omissions Insurance?
Are you familiar with errors and omissions insurance?
It’s a form of liability insurance for professionals that protects you against claims of inadequate work or negligent actions.
“If you’ve ever heard of medical malpractice insurance, it’s the same thing,” says Macpherson. “Errors and omissions is an insurance industry term.”
Many service providers have errors and omissions insurance, including healthcare practitioners.
Do You Need Insurance If You Work At A Clinic?
“The answer to this one,” says Macpherson, “is it depends.”
Check with your clinic to see if you need insurance, or whether you’re covered under theirs.
“The clinic might choose to have their own insurance, or they might require their practitioners to have their own,” Macpherson advises.
Macpherson recommends that you do your own research and ensure that you’re protected, even if the clinic you work with isn’t insured or hasn’t told you to get insurance.
“One of the most common myths I run into is the idea that if the clinic you work for doesn’t have insurance, you don’t need it,” he warns. “This is absolutely not true. Some clinic owners don’t bother with insurance, and that’s their business, but if someone ends up experiencing harm as a result of seeing you, you’re still going to be on the hook to deal with that.”
At the end of the day, most clinics do have insurance, but you’re ultimately responsible for your own practice.
“A lot of clinics have insurance, and so long as you’re an employee of that clinic you’ll be covered. If you’re an independent contractor though, you might not be. Some places still cover independent contractors because they find it easier. Some policies allow it and some don’t. It’s all on a case by case basis,” Macpherson adds.
Do You Need Insurance As A Registered holistic nutritionist?
As a registered holistic nutritionist, you do, in fact, need errors and omissions insurance, since you’re providing a service.
Other service providers, such as financial services, insurance agents, doctors, lawyers, and wedding planners, also require errors and omissions insurance.
Having errors and omissions coverage helps you avoid a substantial financial hit—even bankruptcy—depending on your finances.
Since you’re in the business of providing professional advice and services, it’s a must-have.
Errors and omissions insurance includes first dollar defence, which means that, from the moment you open your claim, you’re covered for your legal expenses and you pay nothing out of pocket.
Macpherson recommends that you contact a broker because every business is different, even each practitioner, and it’s always a good idea to discuss your needs with a broker to ensure you get the insurance plan that’s right for you.
How Do You Protect Yourself As A Registered Holistic Nutritionist?
“You might not be doing open-heart surgery or prescribing pharmaceuticals, but people are still coming to you with health concerns, so there’s still the potential for issues,” Macpherson explains.
Since you’re recommending a course of action to a client to help them achieve their health goals, you could be liable if something goes awry.
Without insurance, the consequences could be serious.
The cost to a client’s health and wellbeing is at stake, as well as your own reputation and finances.
“Bodily injury is not a term they throw around lightly, and often it’s a pretty hefty pay, especially if there’s long term damage,” says Macpherson
But, if you have insurance, the insurance will pay for legal expenses.
“That’s the first thing to come into play – the deposition, discovery, court appearance, etc,” Macpherson says.
As for settlement and compensatory damages, insurance companies often encourage you to settle outside of court.
Errors and omissions insurance will cover this, as well as smaller expenses that might be associated with the legal process, such as hotel stays if you need to travel.
But Holistic Nutrition Is A Safe And Non-Invasive Form Of Health Care!
This is true, of course.
One of the great benefits of working with a registered holistic nutritionist is how safe it is.
Registered holistic nutritionists generally use the least invasive, gentlest approaches to providing treatment for a patient.
However, there is still potential for things to go wrong, even if you’re not actually at fault.
“Your patient might misunderstand what you recommend, you might not recognize a deadly food allergy, they might not follow your recommendation and hold you liable anyway, lots can still go wrong,” Macpherson says.
“Make sure you’re covered as well as you can be. Even if it’s a frivolous lawsuit, you may still have to appear in court, which is an out-of-pocket expense. Your errors and omissions insurance will have your back there,” he adds.
Contact The Edison Institute Of Nutrition
Understanding commercial insurance might not be what drew you to consider a career in holistic nutrition, but it’s absolutely essential to know.
That’s why learning how to run a business as a registered holistic nutritionist is just one of the many skills you’ll learn at the Edison Institute of Nutrition.
By training at the Edison Institute of Nutrition with industry-experienced instructors, you’ll be prepared for all aspects of your practice.
Get in touch with us to start your journey as a successful holistic nutrition business today.