FAQs

Here are some of our most frequently asked questions

 

About Medisec

 

Is Medisec an Insurance Company?

No, Medisec is a welfare management service for Irish GPs, which incorporates a medical indemnity policy underwritten by our partner, Allianz. Allianz is one of the world's largest insurance companies.

What is the relationship with Allianz?

Allianz currently underwrites Medisec Master Policy for medical indemnity cover and manages the claims and litigation service. Medisec works closely with Allianz in their provision of the claims and litigation service.

Who owns Medisec?

Medisec is owned entirely by its members, Irish-based GPs. Each member has an equal vote in the company.

What happens if Medisec makes a profit?

Medisec is a 'not for profit' organisation. However, in the interest of prudence, the Company endeavours to generate a small 'surplus' each year. Any surplus is invested back into the business to benefit the membership.

What rights does membership bestow?

As well as the service benefits, members are entitled to attend the annual general meeting and vote on resolutions. Members are encouraged to play a proactive role in the Company through the utilisation of the services of the medico legal advisory team with 24/7 expert advice and support team, the GP Advisory Panel and the Risk and Best Practice Guidelines.

How can I pay?

Payment can be made by monthly direct debit payments (5% handling fee is applicable), by cheque, by visa debit card, by credit card (2% service charge is applicable if paying by credit card) or by electronic payment directly to our account specifying your membership number and name. If you would like to proceed with the electronic payment option please email membership@medisec.ie

What does the annual subscription cover?

What is the GP Advisory Panel?

For many years, Medisec has had the assistance of a GP Advisory Panel which reviews procedures and developments taking place in general practice. The Panel meets formally on a quarterly basis and considers a wide range of issues which concern General Practitioners.

In addition, Medisec are in ongoing contact with the Panel on day-to-day issues arising from an advisory, claim or indemnity perspective.

The Panel advises both Medisec and its insurer, Allianz, as to what it considers normal GP practice for inclusion under the professional indemnity insurance policy. In considering its views, the Panel endeavours to establish a balance between the procedural practice and the associated risk. However, the final decision on Policy cover rests with Allianz.

The Panel's best practice advice is published (monthly/quarterly/etc.) in our newsletters.

What is tail cover?

After a GP retires he or she is still at risk from claims that arise post retirement but which occurred while in practice. Tail cover is the extended reporting period provided to members who are retired from practice. For doctors who retire at the normal state retirement age applicable at the time of a member’s retirement and who join the Medisec scheme prior to their 55th birthday free tail cover is currently provided by Medisec members who meet this criteria will be entitled to an extended reporting period after the expiration of the policy, i.e. Tail Cover and no additional charge will be levied against retired members for this cover which is currently funded by Medisec.

Tail Cover Explained

What is run-off cover?

If the policy is cancelled before a member’s reach the normal state retirement age applicable on the date of a member’s retirement age and in order to cover any claims that may arise following the cancellation of the Policy, the member is advised to pay Run Off Cover. This Cover is payable annually for as long as there may be a risk of a claim arising from the period of full cover with the Policy.

Tail Cover Explained

What if I want to take early retirement?

If a member wishes to retire before the normal state retirement applicable at the time of the member’s retirement, then we would strongly recommend that the member contacts Medisec to discuss their options and to ensure the member has Run Off cover in place if a claim arises after retirement.

Is my cover guaranteed?

The Medisec Master Policy is an insured product based on Allianz terms and conditions with an indemnity level of €10 million. Our Underwriter, Allianz p.l.c. is a regulated entity and has an independent financial rating of “A” from Standard & Poor. Our product also offers contract certainty and is enforceable in the courts.

 

Medico-Legal Questions

 

Am I charged for making an enquiry to Medisec?

No. All enquiries are free. Medisec encourages you to contact us with any questions or concern, no matter how small.

What is 'tripartite' approach to claims handling?

Essentially, the GP (as well as the patient's representative and Allianz) has an involvement in the claims process, to ensure his/her interests are protected. The member will be informed of the process of litigation, progress and the outcome of any investigation. Allianz will also consider the views of the member prior to settlement. However Allianz reserve the right to settle any claim at its absolute discretion.

I have received a solicitor's letter threatening legal action. What do I do?

Firstly, do not be alarmed. A relatively small percentage of cases that start with a solicitor's letter escalate. However, it is important you do not ignore the letter. Contact Medisec to discuss the issue so that we can agree the optimum way forward, together.

A patient has demanded to see their medical records. Do I have to comply?

Patients do have rights relating to their notes, and a GP should not be obstructive. Kindly ask the patient to put the request in writing. Please contact us, so we can guide you.

I think I've made an error of judgement in a consultation. What should I do?

Members must contact us immediately. It is crucial that you do not ignore your concern. Firstly, the patient may need a re-consultation. Secondly, if you let the worry fester, it may affect your self-confidence.

A letter has arrived from the Irish Medical Council. What do I do?

Please call us immediately and we will discuss the issue with you. We would strongly advise that you take no action on your own initiative before talking to us. Again, remember there is no cause for alarm as only a very small number of such cases reach a full hearing of Council.

I have a problem with my regional health authority. Can you help?

Most issues concerning a GP's relationship with a health authority are usually dealt with by the IMO, but if in doubt, contact us.

Medisec is there as a last resort, to bail me out if legal action is likely, right?

No, Medisec is a first resort. It is better for all concerned that a GP contacts Medisec with any niggling worries or issues, before a problem has developed to the stage where use of indemnity cover is required.

If I speak to Medisec about a problem does it immediately become more serious?

No. A problem shared is a problem halved or even solved. The vast majority of the enquiries we receive can be answered immediately. There is no bureaucratic process and the GP immediately regains peace of mind.

To keep premiums low, I should not bother Medisec with trivial problems, right?

Wrong. No problem is too trivial. The principal cause of large claims settlements is poor communications. The earlier a GP speaks to us, the less likely the matter is to escalate. Successful claims against a GP are far more costly than the additional administration of regular communications.