Professional Medical Malpractice Indemnity

March 2018

A recent meeting held on 28 February 2018 by the LCA/FIPO at the King’s Fund (entitled "Clinical Outcomes and Negligence; Pitfalls and Possibilities" heard presentations from PHIN, the MDU, barristers and solicitors about the rising cost of professional indemnity and negligence claims. This becoming a critical burden for the NHS and also the private sector. It has become apparent that some specialties, such as Spinal Surgery, are being excluded by certain major medical defence organisations from cover. Whilst there are other professional insurers on the market, consultants are advised to review these policies with care noting some of the issues referred to in the report originally commissioned by FIPO (see below).

October 2011

FIPO has commissioned an independent enquiry into professional medical malpractice indemnity. This was prompted by the rising tide of clinical negligence litigation, general complaints and complaints about consultants to the GMC, all of which is being reflected in rising indemnity subscriptions. In addition, there are new insurers offering indemnification to consultants and there appears to be a need to analyse the cost benefits of both the traditional and the new indemnifiers.

An independent expert, Mr Kevin Mccluskie, ACII was appointed via BIBA, the British Insurance Brokers Association and he carried out an in-depth analysis of the market and interviewed the Medical Defence Organisations (MDOs) and the new insurers offering indemnification to consultants. Our thanks go to all the MDOs and insurers who cooperated in this report.

As part of this general review a detailed consultant questionnaire was carried out with over 900 consultant respondents from around the UK. This survey showed a lack of understanding by consultants about their indemnification and also anxiety about premiums and subscriptions which are rising more rapidly than income.

The results of the independent review and the consultant survey were revealed at a meeting on the 18th October 2011 at the Royal Society of Medicine, London. The speakers were Mr John de Bono, Barrister; Mr Dan Toner, General Counsel to Spire Healthcare; Mr Richard Packard, Ophthalmologist and Deputy Chairman of FIPO and Kevin Mccluskie, the FSA regulated independent insurance expert.

The salient points to note are

The outcome of this review on professional medical indemnity is presented in a comprehensive report and also in a shorter summary ('brochure') by Kevin Mccluskie. In addition FIPO has produced a summary of the consultant survey. FIPO has also issued a Press release summarising the meeting at the Royal Society of Medicine.