Case study: 'I've been forced to reduce my sessions'

dr shaba nabi

Dr Shaba Nabi is a salaried GP in Bristol. She qualified as a doctor in 1992 and worked initially in psychiatry and medicine before beginning GP training in 1999. Dr Nabi has done a variety of roles throughout her career, including working on a cruise ship and as a GP for the RAF in Cyprus. She was previously a GP partner in Bristol but became a salaried GP to get a better work-life balance.

Dr Nabi commented on rising indemnity costs:

'I was shocked when I received my medical defence renewal letter to see my subscription had substantially increased, even though I've reduced the number of clinical sessions I'm doing.

'Rising indemnity costs have affected me massively in my career choices. I reduced my sessions when I became a salaried GP and have kept my income up by doing non-clinical roles. Despite this, my indemnity costs have skyrocketed and I am in effect being paid less than I was 10 years ago. I'm not alone; this is part of the reason for the workforce crisis general practice is facing.

'I would like to increase my time seeing patients, but because of indemnity costs I am unable to afford to do so, which is a ridiculous situation when we have a workforce crisis.

'If indemnity costs increase further I would consider a career change, or look to find a role where the costs were paid by my employer, such as a community health role.

'I know the reason for the increasing costs is because of rising clinical negligence claims, but I think it's very unfair that GPs, who are working for the NHS, are treated differently from hospital doctors who have NHS indemnity. I can't understand this. I would like to see NHS indemnity for GPs. Covering our inflationary rises in indemnity costs is not enough. We need to be covered in full to stop people leaving general practice.

'I am a training programme director and I feel for newly qualified GPs. They have indemnity while training, but get a shock when they have to pay for their own indemnity. I believe they will leave and go abroad.'