Membership information 0800 225 5677
Medicolegal advice 0800 225 5677

The benefits of membership

Our whole ethos is focused on putting your needs first. Every day we help members deal with difficult issues arising from their clinical practice, whether they be regulators challenging their professional competence, or patients making complaints or claims for clinical negligence. Just as you do with your own patients, we can provide expertise, reassurance and support to help you through the relevant processes and see things to a resolution.
MPS is not an insurance company. All the benefits of membership of MPS are discretionary as set out in the Memorandum and Articles of Association.

MPS indemnity and representation

You can request assistance with any action, proceeding, claim or demand arising from your professional practice including:

Clinical negligence claims

Clinical negligence claims in New Zealand are rare, but they do occur and can be very costly. When we take on a claim, we manage it from first notification to conclusion and can take care of all the legal costs and compensation payments.

Regulatory body HDC procedures

We can provide advice and legal representation for regulatory body inquiries arising from health, performance, and professional conduct. We can help you from the outset, whether it be drafting a letter in response to a regulatory body (such as MCNZ) or HDC inquiry or providing high-calibre legal representation at a full hearing.

Disciplinary procedures

We provide advice and representation where you face allegations arising from the provision of clinical care to patients, concerning your professional conduct, competence and performance, or in relation to health problems that are having a significant effect on your clinical performance.

Preparing for coronial inquests

We help you prepare a report for the coroner and advise you on how to conduct yourselves at the inquest. If necessary, we can arrange for legal representation on your behalf.

Criminal proceedings

We can help you if you are the subject of criminal investigations that arise directly from your provision of clinical care to patients. This includes investigation or prosecution for gross negligence manslaughter. We can also help you if you face an allegation of indecent or sexual assault, if that arises from your bona fide clinical practice. It is unlikely that we would assist where the allegations arise from personal conduct.

Indemnity for “good Samaritan acts”

The benefits of MPS membership are available to members who are involved in a claim arising from a Good Samaritan act anywhere in the world. A Good Samaritan act is one in which medical assistance is given, free of charge, in a bona fide medical emergency upon which you may chance, in a personal as opposed to a professional capacity. Examples include roadside accidents and emergencies at public events you attend as a spectator. In the unlikely event that legal proceedings follow, you would be entitled to apply for assistance, no matter in which country the legal proceedings are commenced.

Advice

Medicolegal advisory service

You can phone or email us for advice to help resolve the many dilemmas that can arise from everyday practice. Our medicolegal advisers respond to more than 5,500 telephone calls a year. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for urgent advice.

Complaints

We can help you formulate a response to a complaint and assist and support you through to the resolution of a complaint. We work with you to look at why complaints arise and how to minimise the risks of recurrence.

Handling media attention

Where you attract adverse publicity, we can issue press statements and act as spokesperson to the media to shield you as far as possible from having to deal directly with the press.

Counselling support service

MPS works with the Medical Assurance Society to provide members experiencing stress arising from a medicolegal or adverse incident with access to professional counselling and support. You have free and immediate access to this confidential and independent service. 

General practice staff – non-clinical

If any GP at a practice is a member of MPS, the practice’s non-clinical administration staff can ask for assistance from MPS. Practice managers and other non-clinical administrative staff can seek assistance and support from MPS when problems arise from patient care. This assistance applies in areas such as:

  • Privacy issues
  • Complaints and inquiries by the HDC
  • Practice systems queries
  • Legal and ethical dilemmas.

Working in another country

MPS has members in many countries around the world and you may be able to continue membership with us if you decide to work overseas. Please check with our Membership Helpline on +44(0) 800 225 5677 before travelling, to ensure that you have appropriate indemnity arrangements. This is particularly important because some countries – for example, Australia and Germany – have a legal requirement that all healthcare practitioners have insurance based indemnity.

Education and publications

MPS is committed to helping you avoid problems and provide the best care for patients – and we strongly believe in the preventative value of education and risk management. MPS has a wealth of experience and expertise in helping health professionals with ethical and legal problems, and in reducing the risks that arise from your practice. This provides a unique insight into the reasons why things go wrong and why complaints and litigation occur, and what can be done to reduce this. MPS facilitates risk assessments in clinical settings and delivers accredited courses in risk management, while also offering a range of workshops designed specifically for healthcare professionals.

The educational programmes available are based on more than 120 years’ experience and expertise in this field, and include courses and other programmes covering:

  • Clinical risk management
  • Practice systems and processes
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • Professionalism and ethics
  • Medicolegal issues.

As an MPS member you also have access to our E-learning website, Prism, which contains a series of interactive courses and assessments for doctors at all levels.

Visit Prism

MPS has a wealth of experience and expertise in helping health professionals with ethical and legal problems, and in reducing the risks that arise from your practice

Publications

We also produce a range of educational materials, including Casebook and other medicolegal publications, information leaflets and online educational products. The MPS website contains useful advice for reference or download, and printed copies of our publications are also available to members.

View publications