Joint Committee On Human Rights Seventeenth Report


7 Medical Practitioners & Dentists (Professional Negligence Insurance) Bill

Date introduced to the House of Commons

Date introduced to the House of Lords

Current Bill Number

Previous Reports

20 May 2003

House of Commons 111

None

7.1 This Bill would make it a condition of registration to practice medicine or dentistry that the practitioner should hold approved indemnity insurance cover. The drafting of the Bill is unclear. For example, it does not define 'approved indemnity cover', or mention professional negligence insurance except in the long and short titles. It also engages the right to peaceful enjoyment of possessions under Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the ECHR. In our view the requirement (if more clearly drafted) would be likely to be justifiable under that Article, but the current drafting makes it impossible for us to be satisfied that the Bill would be held to meet the demands of the principle of legal certainty which underpins the protection of human rights.

7.2 Our Chair has written to the Member responsible for the Bill, Dr Desmond Turner MP, to draw his attention to our concerns. The letter is printed as an appendix to this Report.

7.3 We draw the matter to the attention of each House.


 
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Prepared 24 November 2003