A Government-funded scheme will provide GPs and others providing NHS services for general practice with comprehensive, automatic cover for clinical negligence claims.

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said that the Clinical Negligence Scheme for General Practice is designed to provide more stable and affordable indemnity cover for GPs.

Free of charge, the scheme will provide cover for all GPs and their practice teams for clinical negligence incidents, relating to provision of NHS primary medical services, occurring from 1 April 2019.

Administered by NHS Resolution on behalf of the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, it is anticipated that the scheme will allow Ministers to have greater oversight of costs and claims.

The DHSC has also committed to put an existing liabilities scheme (ELS) in place subject to reaching agreement with the medical defence organisations. This would cover claims for historical NHS clinical negligence liabilities.

As part of this commitment, DHSC has agreed commercial terms with the Medical Protection Society (MPS) covering NHS clinical negligence claims made against their GP members in respect of liabilities arising before 1 April 2019.

Minister of State for Care, Caroline Dinenage, said: “This new scheme will bring significant benefits to general practice staff, bringing arrangements in line with those for NHS trusts so GPs and their staff can focus on continuing to provide excellent care to patients, knowing they have comprehensive cover in place”.

The introduction of the scheme delivers an important part of the GP contract for 2019 to 2020, she continued.

The extra support for GPs, which follows commitments which made primary care central to the NHS Long Term Plan, will help improve the recruitment and retention of GPs.

See https://resolution.nhs.uk/services/claims-management/clinical-schemes/clinical-negligence-scheme-for-general-practice/ for full details of the new scheme.

Last reviewed 9 May 2019