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Feb 18, 2020

Welcome to RIMScast. Your host is Justin Smulison, Business Content Manager at RIMS, the Risk and Insurance Management Society.


This episode’s topic is the coronavirus, which of February 11th, 2020, has claimed the lives of more than 1,000 people and has infected more than 42,000 globally. In addition to the human factor, the outbreak is limiting operations for businesses and supply chains worldwide and there is a lot for risk professionals to know when advising their companies.


As it is such a critical issue, Justin has invited on two guests to speak on the epidemic Richard P. Lewis, a partner from the law firm, ReedSmith and Dr. Adrian Hyzler, the Chief Medical Officer at Healix International.


In the first half of the episode, Richard will be discussing insurance coverage considerations and in the second half, Dr. Hyzler will join to discuss the health, business continuity, and travel risk management perspectives. Justin and his guests discuss what risk professionals should consider when it comes to the coronavirus, how they have been advising clients regarding it, important lessons they have learned from previous outbreaks, good travel risk management practices, and where to go to get the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus. They also debunk myths and conspiracy theories around the coronavirus and share the most effective methods for staying safe.


Key Takeaways:

[:01] About the RIMS Benchmark Survey and the RIMS Membership.

[:48] About today’s topic!

[:51] Justin reminds listeners that registration is open for RIMS 2020.

[1:10] All about today’s episode and featured guests.

[2:09] Justin welcomes Richard Lewis to RIMScast.

[2:14] When it comes to insurance coverage regarding the coronavirus, what should risk professionals consider?

[3:15] Richard speaks about some of the issues their clients are currently reporting.

[3:36] Richard shares how he has been advising clients with Chinese operations, supply chains, remote workers, or anyone who is traveling to and from China.

[4:53] What insurance lessons from past outbreaks or pandemics should risk professionals be mindful of now if faced with claims arising from the coronavirus?

[7:08] The importance of paying attention to policy language when faced with any epidemic or outbreak.

[9:22] Does Richard agree with the idea that we’re still in the very early stages when it comes to insurance coverage?

[10:13] Justin introduces RIMScast’s next guest, Dr. Hyzler.

[10:39] Dr. Hyzler explains what the coronavirus is and how it is has progressed.

[13:07] What is the coronavirus’ incubation period?

[13:37] What is the difference between an epidemic and a pandemic?

[14:22] Dr. Hyzler shares what he has learned from previous outbreaks that are now applicable.

[18:30] Dr. Hyzler provides some good travel risk management practices (or precautions) that he would stress right now.

[27:00] Would Dr. Hyzler suggest that companies begin creating or customizing a preparedness plan and a business continuity plan now if they haven’t done so already?

[29:22] If a company was to host an event outside of China and they had attendees, sponsors, or exhibitors from China, how would that change the dynamic? And how has Dr. Hyzler seen companies react in situations like that?

[31:31] Can the coronavirus be transmitted by touching the same objects? How can we protect against this?

[33:10] Dr. Hyzler debunks some myths and conspiracy theories around the coronavirus.

[39:03] Where to go to get the correct, up-to-date info on the coronavirus.

[39:33] Dr. Hyzler gives his outlook on the next couple of weeks regarding the coronavirus.

[43:16] Justin thanks his guests for joining him and highlights some important links in the show notes.


Mentioned in this Episode:

RIMS 2020 (May 3rd–6th in Denver, CO)

Upcoming RIMS Events

RM Magazine

Risk Management Monitor

RIMS-Certified Risk Management Professional (RIMS-CRMP)

New Feature: RIMS-CRMP Stories

RIMS Membership — Discover why 10,000 of your peers from more than 60 countries are a part of the RIMS community!

RIMS Benchmark Survey: Contribute your data by March 31 and receive the 2020 Survey for free! You’ll learn how much companies are paying per line of coverage and more. Visit

Download any episode of RIMScast.

RIMS Webinar - Feb 27: The Insurance Impacts of Novel Coronavirus

Risk Management Monitor: “2 Key Risk Management Responses to the Coronavirus”

Risk Management Magazine: “Learning from Past Pandemics”

World Health Organization

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


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Follow up with Our Guests:

Richard P. Lewis

Dr. Adrian Hyzler