The GMC requires that all doctors “must make sure you have adequate insurance or indemnity cover so that your patients will not be disadvantaged if they make a claim about the clinical care you have provided in the UK.”
While a doctor’s NHS work will be covered by the Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts, they will need to arrange “adequate insurance or indemnity cover” for any private activities.
There are two options available to doctors
- discretionary indemnity from a medical defence organisation
- an insurance policy from a commercial insurer, arranged through an insurance broker
Each doctor should consider their own circumstances, but here are just some of the reasons why a doctor may consider an insurance policy...
- The indemnity provided by an insurance policy is legally enforceable. It is not discretionary.
- All the terms and limitations of an insurance policy are clearly stated before purchasing the policy.
- Insurance policies are usually arranged via an insurance broker.
An insurance broker will assess the insurance requirements, source appropriate cover, negotiating terms and premiums on behalf of the doctor.
- Insurance brokers and insurers are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
- Insurance policies benefit from wider financial industry services, including the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) and the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
The FOS was established by parliament to resolve individual complaints that consumers and businesses aren't able to settle themselves.
FSCS is the compensation scheme for customers of UK authorised financial services firms. They can compensate customers if a firm has stopped trading or does not have enough assets to pay claims made against it.