Renewing your nursing registration: Professional Indemnity Insurance

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This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Renewing your registration

In the lead-up to the May 31 deadline, Nurse Uncut brings you a series of articles on subjects that nurses and midwives frequently enquire about when renewing their registration. Last week we covered criminal disclosure requirements. This week we look at Professional Indemnity Insurance.

When registered nurses, enrolled nurses and midwives practise, they must only do so when covered by an appropriate Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) policy.

PII is a type of insurance that covers professionals (including nurses and midwives) for civil claims arising from their practice (eg. negligence).

Upon renewal of your registration, you will be asked to make two declarations with regard to PII. The first is that you declare that in the preceding year you have only practised whilst covered by an appropriate PII policy. The second is that you declare that if your registration is renewed you will only practise whilst covered by an appropriate PII policy.

In NSW, those nurses and midwives who are employed will ordinarily be covered by their employer’s PII policy. This is because NSW has legislation which stipulates that employers are liable for the actions of their employees provided those actions are not considered serious wilful misconduct. Different states have different arrangements, so it is important to understand your obligations if you work outside of NSW.

If you are self-employed, you should make sure you are covered by an appropriate PII policy, either through your own insurer or through your membership of the NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association (NSWNMA) or other professional association that offers PII cover.  Privately practising midwives must obtain their own PII in relation to ante-natal and post-natal care. There are no insurers that provide PII insurance for intra-partum care provided by privately practising midwives and as such the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia has granted an exemption from this requirement.

If you are audited, you may be required to provide evidence of the PII policy that covers your practice.

The NSWNMA provides PII coverage to financial members. In addition to the PII that a nurse or midwife might have through their employer, the NSWNMA’s PII policy also covers members for independent representation in coronial inquests and disciplinary proceedings before the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

If you have any questions in relation to PII, please contact the NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association for advice on 8595 1234.

If you’d like to read more about your PII obligations, see the NMBA’s PII arrangements Registration Standard here and the NMBA’s PII fact sheet here.

Previously on Nurse Uncut:

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