Cost of indemnity driving newly-qualified GPs out of the profession

Newly-qualified GPs are being driven out of the profession due to unsustainable indemnity costs, according to a survey that warns of an impending GP crisis.

The sky-high cost of indemnity is pushing many GPs to early retirement, but also causing many newly-qualified and younger GPs to consider leaving the profession, the MDU has revealed.

The MDU said it had been inundated with responses to its Save General Practice campaign, which it launched last month.

Initial findings of the survey – released ahead of the full results – suggested younger GPs were considering changing career due to the costs, the medicolegal group warned.

One respondent said: ‘I am about to qualify and the indemnity costs are seriously making me consider leaving medicine. I have already started arranging interviews outside of medicine.’

Another said they were considering leaving the profession ‘in their 30s’ due to the cost of ‘sky rocketing’ and ‘unsustainable’ GP indemnity fees.

GP indemnity fees

MDU director of professional services Dr Matthew Lee said the results showed the issue must go to ‘the top of the government’s in-tray’ following the election.

The government must ‘act quickly’ to provide financial support to GPs to prevent a crisis that ‘would leave all patients at risk’, he said.

‘The number of responses and comments our survey has generated shows the strength of feeling GPs have about the rising cost of indemnity.

‘We expected that some GPs would say they were thinking of retiring earlier or reducing the amount they work. But we didn’t expect that even recently-qualified GPs would be thinking of a career change because of indemnity costs.

‘This is really worrying news for general practice, which not only needs to attract more GP trainees, but be able to retain them.’

Photo: JH Lancy

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