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What is medical indemnity insurance and why is it needed?

If you’re new to the world of running your own business, or it’s the first time you’ve been tasked with sorting out this year’s insurance cover, you’ll no doubt have lots of questions. You will probably be asking yourself, what types of cover do I need?

One type of cover we are often asked about is medical indemnity insurance and what medical indemnity insurance actually is. So let’s take a look at which businesses need medical indemnity insurance, what it covers, and everything else you need to know about this insurance.

Medical indemnity insurance vs. medical malpractice insurance

To begin with it’s worth pointing out that medical indemnity insurance is also known and referred to as medical malpractice insurance or cover. If you see medical malpractice mentioned anywhere, we’re talking about medical indemnity insurance. This should prevent any confusion later down the line.

What does medical indemnity insurance cover you for?

In a nutshell medical indemnity insurance covers you against a breach of your professional duties. If someone believes that there has been a breach of duty of care or omissions, or professional negligence whilst you and your business are carrying out medical work, there is a possibility that the person will make a claim against you. This work usually involves providing care to your patients and medical indemnity insurance will cover you against legal costs and claims for damages associated with the perceived negligence.

What types of businesses need medical indemnity insurance?

Medical indemnity insurance is a cover relevant to all healthcare providers, including:

  • Hospitals.
  • Individual practitioners.
  • Mental health clinics.
  • Medical staff suppliers.
  • Obstetric scanning.
  • Aesthetic cosmetic practices.
  • Complementary medicine practices.

Medical indemnity insurance is an essential cover which can cover you against legal costs and claims for damages.

Is medical indemnity compulsory?

Medical indemnity insurance for doctors and other registered medical practitioners is a statutory requirement. Insurance and indemnity is a complex area, which is why it is important to use an insurance broker that has specialist expertise in this field to ensure that you have the right level of protection in place and avoid any gaps in cover, which could lead to serious consequences. 

What types of incident does medical indemnity cover you for?

Whilst you’re working sometimes things don’t go to plan, even in a healthcare setting. If an incident happens and one of your service users believes you have breached your duty of care, medical indemnity insurance can step in. Here are some of the common claims* that medical indemnity insurance can cover you for:

  • Misdiagnosis.
  • Failure to diagnose.
  • Surgical errors.
  • Incorrect treatment.
  • Prescription errors.
  • Failure to provide a clean environment.
  • Failing to adequately train doctors and other staff.

*This list is not exhaustive

If you’d like to find out more about medical indemnity insurance, visit our medical indemnity insurance webpage.

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