General practice is an increasingly challenging and high-risk environment in which to practise medicine. Chief Executive Simon Kayll, explains how we assess those risks and calculate GP membership subscriptions.
Medical Protection is a not-for-profit organisation that exists purely for the benefit of our members, with no shareholders to pay dividends to. All subscriptions go towards helping you deal with the challenges that you face in your professional practice. The discretionary nature of our membership also means that we may be able to assist in unusual circumstances that could fall outside of a standard contract.
More UK primary care claims were reported to us in 2014 than ever before. While some of these claims will run into thousands of pounds, others will involve millions, which far outstrips the amount a GP will pay for professional protection over the course of their entire career.
We share your concern about the cost of clinical negligence. On your behalf, we continue to challenge the Government to consider action to reduce this, as it negatively impacts the level of member subscriptions and, as far as the costs incurred by the NHS are concerned, it diverts funds away from patient care.
Your membership is ‘occurrence-based’, which means that it allows you to request assistance with a claim or complaint that was caused by an incident that occurred during your time as a member - even if you only became aware of it much later and after your membership ended.
This is helpful because the nature of negligence claims means that it can often be years before a case is brought and fully resolved. Our current experience is that it takes, on average, over seven years.
We respond to this in how we calculate membership subscriptions. A lot of detailed and robust actuarial work is undertaken, assessing trends in the size of claims and in the likelihood of claims for your area of practice. We build this into subscriptions so that we have enough funds set aside as reserves for claims as yet unreported, as they fall due in future years. This means we can be confident of being there for you, as we have been since 1892.
As a GP you can also receive much more from us by getting together with colleagues and joining our Practice Xtra group scheme, which combines a discount on membership with a range of added-value education and risk management services.
Read about Medical Protection's not-for-profit status
Top advice from Medical Protection
You can access our most popular advice as factsheets on our website. Here is a list of our most popular factsheets:
Access to health records
Mental Capacity Act (2005) Assessments under the deprivation of liberty safeguards
Confidentiality - disclosures without consent
Mental Capacity Act - general principles