Benefits of membership
NHS indemnity is not comprehensive - it covers clinical negligence claims but nothing else. MDDUS membership provides hospital doctors working within the NHS with a range of essential benefits:
24/7 advice from leading medico-legal experts
Competitive subscription rates and continuity of support – benefits travel with you, wherever you’re based across the UK
Advice and representation for disciplinary matters, GMC hearings and CIs/FAIs including all legal support
Access to a range of learning and development resources, plus discounts on a range of textbooks and training
Worldwide indemnity for Good Samaritan acts
Stay up-to-date with online and print communications – magazines, newsletters, news, features, case studies, regular columns and risk alerts
Click for answers to commonly asked questions regarding membership of MDDUSOpen FAQs
I work for the NHS. Why do I require membership when I already have NHS indemnity?
As a hospital doctor, you will be covered by NHS indemnity for work undertaken within your NHS contract. If, however, you were involved in disciplinary issues, General Medical Council (GMC)/General Dental Council (GDC) referrals, fatal accident inquiries or coroner's inquests, you would not receive any assistance. In situations like this, which can have a serious impact on your career and ultimately result in you being struck off, MDDUS membership provides you with access to expert support and advice. The MDDUS advisory and legal teams have years of experience and clinical knowledge from which you can benefit.
If I am referred to the General Medical Council (GMC) or the General Dental Council (GDC) will the NHS offer me assistance?
No. The NHS will not assist you if you're involved in a GMC or GDC matter. It's important to remember that the GMC/GDC has the power to suspend you, place restrictions on your practice, issue you with a warning and ultimately erase you from the register. With such potentially severe consequences, there are many advantages to having representation and assistance from the MDDUS whose focus will be to ensure that your case is dealt with fairly and efficiently.
What are the advantages of having assistance from the MDDUS at a fatal accident inquiry or coroner's inquest?
Criticisms made at an inquiry or inquest can lead to a GMC/GDC or criminal matter being raised against you. Due to the potential of such a serious outcome it is important to have the support and guidance of an MDDUS adviser who can advise you on how to conduct yourself throughout this formal, and often daunting, process. At MDDUS, we have retained some of the UK's leading medico-legal and dento-legal solicitors, which means we can instruct the best legal representation. As an MDDUS member, this representation is available to you free of charge.
What are the benefits of a mutual organisation?
One of the most valuable benefits of a mutual organisation is that the MDDUS doesn't have shareholders and does not pay dividends to its members. That means all the income generated by subscriptions is invested back into the organisation and member services, and in the maintenance of a healthy reserve to cover legal costs and claims. This, coupled with our sound financial acumen, means that we maintain very competitive subscription rates and have built a financially strong organisation
What's the difference between occurrence-based cover and claims-made cover?
MDDUS membership provides occurrence-based indemnity. This means that you are eligible for assistance for all events that occur while you are a member, regardless of when an actual claim is made. You will enjoy the full support of the MDDUS even if you have moved abroad, ceased clinical work or retired. Your estate will likewise be supported after your death. Insurance products operate in a completely different way; they usually only guarantee protection if you are insured, both when the incident occurred and when the claim is made. The crucial importance of this lies in the fact that medical and dental malpractice claims can be made several months or even years after the events that give rise to the claim.
Why should I choose MDDUS for my professional indemnity?
MDDUS has been providing support and indemnity to medical and dental professionals for over 110 years. We pride ourselves on offering a quality, personalised service provided by our team of medico- and dento-legal advisers who are recognised as some of the leading UK experts in their field. Our members can enjoy the security and peace of mind which comes with receiving this high level of service at a competitive price. Our expertise has been invaluable in supporting our members when they need us.
Over the past 10 years, MDDUS has successfully defended more than 75 per cent of claims notified and, in the rare event of a case progressing to trial, the majority of our members are successfully defended. In 2011 more than 96 per cent of GMC complaints were resolved without the need to progress to a fitness to practise hearing.
We are proud to say that, in an independent survey carried out by market research firm GfK, MDDUS ranked highest of all UK mutual medical defence organisations for member satisfaction (online poll of 695 defence organisation members conduced by GfK, NOP May 2012; rating of satisfaction with overall services/resources provided).
MDDUS also enjoys a superior rating from Dun & Bradstreet, the leading global business information provider, which further underlines the financial strength of our organisation
Will I be indemnified for any claims arising from my previous period of membership with my existing defence organisation?
It is our understanding that your previous defence organisation will continue to protect you for time spent with them as a member, should any case arise after you leave them. For your own peace of mind, you should confirm this with them.
Would membership indemnify me to work throughout the UK?
MDDUS members are indemnified to work anywhere in the UK but not Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands. Although we do not normally operate membership outside the UK, we do indemnify members for Good Samaritan acts anywhere in the world, which are not covered by any other indemnity or insurance arrangements.
MDDUS indemnity is 'discretionary'. What does that mean?
Discretionary means that the settling of claims and providing of assistance is at the discretion of the Board. The ability to operate discretion, as opposed to compliance with inflexible terms and conditions such as those found in insurance policies, is a positive benefit. In many cases we have offered levels of support to our members that would not have been possible with a conventional insurance policy.
Advice and support you can trust
MDDUS membership provides access to professional and legal advice and support all year round, across the UK. And even if you choose to leave, or life takes you beyond the UK, you’ll still benefit from our support if you’re facing issues related to something that happened while you were a member.Case study