The State Backed Indemnity Scheme – Key points

Advice to members on what to do next

Don’t change your current arrangements until clarity has been provided

On 31st January 2019 the government confirmed the launch date for the State Backed scheme as 1st April 2019, however, as has been described, certain of its important components, such as what happens to historic risks, have not yet been finalised. As such, the advice for members is do nothing at this stage to change your cover until all of the elements of the State Backed Scheme have been completely finalised and its consequences are fully understood.

Consider whether all of your GP practice based activities are described in a GMS, PMS or APMS contract

In contemplating what indemnity arrangements they might need to consider in the future, pharmacists working in GP practices in England and Wales are advised to consider whether ALL OF THE WORK that they undertaking in a GP practice would fall under the scope of a GMS, PMS, Out of hours work or APMS contract as only work undertaken under one of these contracts would be covered under the State Backed Scheme.

You will need cover over and above the State Backed scheme if you are working in a portfolio career

Those pharmacists working in a portfolio career, which sees them working simultaneously sometimes for other (perhaps private) employers, in different settings and employment arrangements and also in other branches of the profession, would need to consider their indemnity arrangements in all of these scenarios as the State Backed Scheme would only cover them for NHS work delivered under the aforementioned GP contracts.

Ensure you protect your reputation in front of regulatory, employment and criminal investigations and coroners inquests

Having in place arrangements for representation in front of a GPhC regulatory episode, a coroners inquest a dispute with an employer or even for any potential criminal investigations are a necessary and vital component of the practice of any healthcare professional. In the experience of the PDA, pharmacists are far more likely to be involved in these types of medico-legal episodes (with the exception of criminal investigations) than they would in facing a demand for compensation from a patient. They are urged to continue to keep up their membership of the PDA and this is why a modified membership scheme is currently being developed; details will announced in due course.

Look out for the publication of the Q&A for pharmacists that the PDA and DHSC are currently working on

The PDA will keep members fully updated as and when any material developments can be confirmed. In the meantime, members are advised to keep a look out for the Question and Answer information that the PDA and the Department of Health are currently working on.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

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