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Myth busting in South Africa

12 February 2019

We hear quite a few misconceptions about Medical Protection and our service in South Africa, so we want to bust those myths once and for all

It’s important that members in South Africa fully understand how their Medical Protection membership helps protect their career and professional reputation. We value all members and appreciate they may have questions, so we want to bust some of those myths and set the record straight.

Does Medical Protection have a policy to try and settle claims as soon as possible rather than defend the member?

It is a common misconception that we settle claims as quickly as possible because it is cheaper and easier for us to do so. This is simply not true – in fact, this would just encourage more claims in the long run.

Instead, we take into consideration all of the evidence and information that we have available – including your record keeping notes and consent documents, and give you our considered view on the relative merits of settling or defending a claim, based upon our experience and expertise in these matters.

As a member-owned organisation, supporting members is always our first concern, and we will robustly defend claims whenever possible and where the professional advice is that the patient’s claim has poor prospects of success. Where a claim is deemed indefensible and the advice is that compensation should be paid to a patient, we aim to resolve the claim as quickly as possible.

We are proud to say that 76% of medical claims and potential claims against members were successfully defended worldwide in the five-year period from 2012 to 2016.

Continued education, allied to the adoption of improved record keeping processes and tools by practitioners, will help to ensure more defensible cases. In South Africa we actively invest in risk management education for members, stressing the importance and impact that good record keeping has on our ability to defend members successfully. We will continue to partner with members and associations, providing relevant education and advice on the critical process of accurate record keeping.