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After months of intense negotiation we have finally signed off this year’s GP contract deal. Its centrepiece is the delivery of the much heralded state-backed indemnity scheme whose origins began in negotiations that started 2 years ago in the wake of the change to the Discount Rate. It has therefore been a long road that we have travelled and the launch of the scheme in April will see a new era in general practice.
The contract delivers an agreement which will provide all GPs and other clinical staff working in general practice (including out of hours settings) with state-funded indemnity in perpetuity in addition to a 1.4% contract uplift, subject to network engagement. This is a one-off settlement and puts to bed forever the spectre of spiralling indemnity costs. For the first time in the history of the NHS, GPs will no longer need to worry about the arrival of the inexorably rising annual bill, or fret about whether an MDO might terminate their membership. If you are on the Performers’ List you are covered for NHS general practice work. It is that simple.
GPs will still need to be a member of a Medical Defence Organisation (MDO) to ensure cover for GMC hearings, coroners and criminal cases and for services provided outside of the GMS/PMS/APMS contract (eg HGV medicals etc). MDOs are currently contacting members to explain the cover that they will be offering from April 1st and their proposed pricing structure.
NHS Resolution has been given the task of running the new scheme and we are liaising with them, DHSC and NHSE regarding how this will work in a practical sense. Indemnity cover will exist by right as a result of being on the Performers’ List and working in GP settings, and the finer details of the schemes administration will be announced shortly. The interface between MDOs and NHSR will be an important one and cases that are already ongoing will continue to be handled by the MDO currently involved.
I have discovered over the last couple of years that the field of indemnity is both fascinating and utterly complex. There are a thousand nuances and many special cases that require careful consideration. This has been the task of those of us working to deliver this development which henceforth will be funded entirely by government. Details of this work will be disseminated in guidance, but the profession can now rest easy in the knowledge that the promise that many believed could not be delivered has finally arrived.
Mark Sanford-Wood is a member of GPC executive
Learn more about the new GP contract
Anyone feeling reassured enough to cancel their defence subscription from April- or managed to negotiate any discount for just covering GMC/ coroners court?
We all owe you a great deal in negotiating this, thank you for all your efforts and hard work.
I am currently paying £3000 a year for supervising 3 medical students for half a day once a week in a non clinical setting. Once every 8 weeks (3 times a year) I bring in a patient with a longstanding illness to act as an exam patient for them. I do CBD with the students. This is my only work at the moment having recently retired. Seems a rather high cost for a low risk situation. I did query the cost with the MPS and the lady did discuss with her supervisor... Will teaching be covered I wonder? After all we do need to train more doctors for the NHS>
how might affect the cost of run off cover when I retire
My current provider will charge 70% indefinitely after I retire .
brilliant achievement --well done
Any body knows if this scheme will include Locums or work for OOH?
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