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Professional indemnity cover now a legal requirement

All healthcare professionals must now have appropriate indemnity cover as a legal requirement, the government has announced. 

The rule is introduced comes just as the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) stopped providing indemnity cover for most nurses. 

The RCN changed their arrangements in order to "close a loophole" that allowed employers to shift the costs of indemnity cover onto the college. 

By law, nurses and midwives must have in place an appropriate indemnity arrangement in order to practise and provide care. While the arrangement does not necessarily need to be individually held by the nurse or midwife, it is their responsibility to ensure that appropriate cover is in force.

When nurses or midwives join the register, or renew their registration, they will declare to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) that they hold appropriate cover under an indemnity arrangement or will hold such cover whenever they practice.

The NMC Code: Standards of conduct, performance and ethics for nurses and midwives (NMC, 2008) has been updated to reflect this change and that having an appropriate indemnity arrangement in place is now mandatory.