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The Government has moved to clarify the rules over travel vaccinations – and has stressed that GPs do need separate indemnity cover for this work.

NHS Resolution’s website had originally stated that the administration of travel vaccines and immunisations in which the patient is charged were in the scope of the new state-backed indemnity scheme.

The NHS Resolution’s information about the clinical negligence scheme for GPs (CNSGP) has now been updated to clarify that this is not the case.

GPs and travel vaccines

The situation regarding travel vaccines and immunisations is as follows:

  • Those listed as NHS-funded in the GMS Contract Guidance are covered by CNSGP
  • Those not listed and that require the patient to pay, such as yellow fever or rabies, are classes as private services. The CNSGP does not cover private services offered by GPs so separate indemnity cover is needed for this.
  • Advice on vaccinations – whether they are paid for or not – is covered by the CNSGP.

In recognition of the confusion, the Department of Health and Social Care has said it will provide assistance for any claim for clinical negligence made against anyone who administered travel vaccinations between 1st April 2019 and 31st July 2019. GPs should contact NHS Resolution for claims made within this specific period.

After this period – and in light of this clarification – GPs will need separate cover for this work.

Medical Defense Society CEO Rohan Simon said: “This is just one example of the importance of GPs retaining indemnity cover for the aspects of their role that fall outside of the state-backed scheme.

“We’re keen to ensure GPs have the support they need to do their jobs with peace of mind.”

If you have any queries about immunisations or any other aspects of GP work and indemnity, get in touch with us today.