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Medical Council launches Public Consultation on Section 11 Rules for Professional Indemnity

Wednesday, 28th February 2018: Following the passing of the Medical Practitioner’s (Amendment) Act 2017, by the Oireachtas, changes to the Medical Practitioners Act have been made requiring all registered doctors to have in place minimum levels of professional indemnity cover as may be specified by the National Treasury Management Agency. The Medical Council is obliged to seek confirmation from doctors that they have the appropriate level of cover in place.

The Medical Council is now undertaking a public consultation on the rules which will guide the administrative arrangements to support the legislative changes.

As indemnity cover arrangements vary dependent upon employment/practice arrangement and their area of practice, the requirements for reporting indemnity cover also vary.

As a registered medical practitioner, a doctor’s first exposure to reporting will be at the annual retention of registration.

Speaking at the launch of the consultation, Mr Philip Brady, Director of Registration & Business Process Improvement, said “All doctors practising medicine in Ireland must have indemnity cover appropriate to the nature of their employment/practice arrangement and their area of practice. Professional indemnity is a mandatory requirement and will protect the practitioner against claims arising in respect of medical malpractice, negligence and other civil claims that arise from a breach of duty associated with your practice as a doctor.”

“We have launched this public consultation on the draft rules which will guide the administrative arrangements to support the legislative changes for the Council to ensure this process will operate as smoothly as possible.” concluded Mr Brady.

For many doctors the only requirement will be to complete the appropriate declaration. On the online portal this will be “ticking the box” confirming they have read and will comply with the requirements.

For some doctors, they will need to complete the declaration and then submit a copy of their indemnity cover certificate to the Council for verification they have indemnity cover appropriate to the nature of their employment/practice arrangement and the area of their practice. This will be explained in greater detail closer to when all doctors will be renewing their registration.

The draft rules, an explanatory note and a form for provision of feedback is available on the Medical Council website.

Submissions on the draft rules should reach the Council by close of business on Friday 16th March 2018.

ENDS