Professional Indemnity Insurance

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Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) is important for everyone working in nursing and midwifery including enrolled and registered nurses, midwives, assistants in nursing and midwifery and personal care assistants.

Ensuring you have an appropriate level of PII coverage is important to everyone, and essential for nurses and midwives under the Health Practitioners Regulation National Law. Failure to comply with this obligation will not only expose nurses and midwives in the event of negligence, but may expose the practicing professional to a charge of unprofessional conduct.

Anyone could:

  • Be wrongfully accused of unprofessional conduct in both administration or clinical roles
  • Mistakenly administer an incorrect drug or dosage of drug to a patient
  • Fail to accurately carry out all instructions in a busy service
  • Be involved in a court case even if only indirectly
  • Be required to give evidence after witnessing an incident
  • Make a mistake because of workload stress, insufficient information or any other reason

ANMF (SA Branch) protects members: 

  • If you are sued for negligence or malpractice (breach of your professional duty)
  • If you require independent representation to that of your employer for any reason
  • If you are sued for damages arising from a public liability claim
  • If you are sued for defamation
  • If you are required to attend an inquiry, hearing of a court inquiry or professional board tribunal by order of the particular inquiry
  • To ring and get advice if you are concerned or unsure about an incident that is in connection with your professional conduct
  • Good Samaritan acts 24/7

What type of cover is included?

  • Cover for professional indemnity
  • Cover for public liability (negligence for injury to a third party, persons, or property)
  • 24 hour insurance cover for Good Samaritan acts.

How much am I covered for?

  • Professional indemnity coverage for each and every claim up to a limit of $10 million
  • Public liability coverage for each and every claim up to a limit of $10 million

But aren’t I covered by my employer?


In many situations, the interests of the employer may vary from the interests of the employee. For example, you may not always be covered by your employer for breaches of their workplace policies or for representation before an AHPRA inquiry/hearing if you are accused of somehow breaching the national law regulating nurses and midwives.

Here are some real examples involving members across Australia where the employer’s insurance was not sufficient to cover them, but their ANMF membership cover did provide assistance:

  • Member was required to attend a hearing at the Coroner’s Court and a lawyer and barrister was appointed to represent them. No further action was taken against them, but legal fees were $4,400.
  • Multiple members represented at hearing after the death of patient following liposuction surgery. Legal costs and damages amounted to $128,625, which was not covered by the employer but was covered by the ANMF’s insurer.

Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) is important for everyone working in nursing and midwifery including enrolled and registered nurses, midwives, assistants in nursing and midwifery and personal care assistants.

Appropriate PII is essential


PII is important to everyone, but essential for nurses and midwives as the Health Practitioners Regulation National Law imposes a specific obligation on nurses and midwives not to practice unless appropriate professional indemnity insurance arrangements are in force in relation to their practice, (Section 129). A failure to comply with this obligation will not only expose nurses and midwives in the event of negligence, to the potential for uninsured civil liability, but may expose them to a charge of unprofessional conduct.

The Nurses and Midwives Board of Australia PII arrangements standard, to which the National Law refers, defines PII arrangements to mean “that secure for the nurse and/or midwife’s professional practice, insurance against civil liability incurred by, or loss arising from, a claim that is made as a result of a negligent act, error or omission in the conduct of the nurse and/or midwife”.

ANMF (SA Branch) member’s PII provides $10 million PII cover. Importantly in the case of employees, the cover operates in the event that their employer does not indemnify them from a negligence claim.


Are only members covered?


Only working category financial members of the ANMF (SA Branch) are covered by ANMF (SA Branch) PII. Additionally industrial, professional and legal advice and representation will only be provided to those who are full financial members of the ANMF (SA Branch) at the time the incident for which they are seeking assistance occurs.


Are there any exclusions?


Yes. The primary exclusions are that the PII does not extend to privately practicing midwives in independent practice or self-employed, associate members or student members who are not working or identified as a working category member. Other exclusions include osteopathy, chiropractic or manipulative therapy, dishonesty, fraud and criminal acts. Services rendered under the influence of intoxicants or drugs are also excluded.


How do I ensure I am 100% protected?


You must be in the correct membership category and your membership fees must be up-to-date at all times. The best way to make sure you don’t become unfinancial is to pay your ANMF fees by direct debit. Ensure your membership category and payment details are correct by contacting the membership team.
 

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