Starting in Private Practice

Supporting you as you start out in private practice

Starting out in private practice can be daunting, but with the right support and information it can be an exciting, rewarding, and fulfilling experience. At MDA National, we recognise the challenges that come with starting out in private practice. We are committed to providing you with the resources and guidance you need to hit the ground running, so you can focus on providing the best care for your patients.

There are known common areas of risk when you are setting up a practice. Hear Gae Nuttall, Risk Advisor at MDA National, discuss what you need to think about when setting up your practice:



This is your MDA National – your trusted partner for support in the moments that matter

Below are some important resources to help assist you:



Premium discount and support initiatives

As a doctor-owned mutual since 1925, we have the experience, support initiatives and resources to help you with the challenges you may face as you establish practice processes to mitigate medico-legal risk.

Aggregate Limit of Cover for all Claims* 
  • Defend you in civil legal proceedings brought by patients
  • Defend you in civil proceedings alleging breach of privacy
  • Defend you in civil proceedings arising from telehealth
  • Defend you in civil proceedings when you have been acting as a good Samaritan
  • Defend you in some civil proceedings whilst practicing overseas for limited time
  • Defend you in civil proceedings arising from clinical trials
  • Defend you against allegations of defamation
  • Defend your practice in civil proceedings
  • Pay the legal costs of defending you in professional negligence and some civil liability matters
  • Pay civil damages you are ordered to pay in professional negligence and civil liability matters
  • Pay costs you are ordered to pay

$20 million
 We will...
Aggregate Sub-limits*
  • Represent you and pay legal costs when you are investigated by Ahpra or a professional services review committee
  • Represent you and pay legal costs in inquiries relating to provision of healthcare services
  • Represent you and pay legal costs when self-referring regarding a health impairment
  • Pay costs you are ordered to pay with respect to covers for investigations and inquiries
  • Represent you and pay legal costs in defending allegations of some sexual misconduct and criminal matters

$2 million

  • Represent you and pay legal costs in certain employment, credentialing and training disputes
$100,000 but for claims by you for unpaid remuneration we will not pay more than the amount reasonably sought by you
  • Represent you and pay legal costs when you are defamed
$100,000 (with Excess of $20,000)
  • Represent you and pay legal costs in obtaining AVOs on your behalf
  • Defend you against imposed fines and penalties for breach of Privacy Act
  • Pay fines and penalties imposed on you for breach of Privacy Act
  • Pay notification costs for breach of Privacy Act

  • Compensate you when you contract certain communicable diseases
$100,000 for Medical Practitioner

  • Pay you for loss of income in some circumstances
$20,000 (with a maximum of $2,000 per day for up to 10 days)
  • Cover you for loss of documents

*Provided that the Maximum Limit of Indemnity is not exceeded.
†A copy of the Policy Wording is available at 

For more information please read our Professional Indemnity Insurance Policy Combined Financial Services Guide (FSG), Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Policy Wording and Supplementary FSG and PDS including Amendments to the Policy Wording from our Download Center.

  • 24-hour medico-legal advice– expertise and support when you need it most.
  • Member Online Services– access your insurance documents at your convenience, update your details, access Member-only resources and online education. 
  • Practice Indemnity Policy– recommended in addition to your own professional indemnity policy, to protect your practice entity and practice staff. 
  • Accredited education– gain CPD (continuing professional development) points from our extensive suite of education, which we believe is unrivalled in Australian medical indemnity today.
  • Support in Practice– personalised services to assist you in managing your professional risk.
  • Starting In Private Practice– resources and guidance on starting in private practice, from billings and fees to advertising guidelines and the management of patient records.
  • Part of your profession– doctors are an integral part of MDA National with key roles on our Mutual Board, our group and management committees, and on staff. Please contact us if you are interested in contributing to MDA National.
  • Experienced medico-legal advisers and case managers – with broad medico-legal experience, and healthcare and legal qualifications.
  • Industry events– in addition to hosting our own events, we participate in industry events across the country via sponsorship, and by providing education to the medical profession.
  • Doctors for Doctors Program– confidential peer support during medico-legal matters, exempt from mandatory reporting.
  • Professional Support Service– complimentary and confidential professional support from an independent psychiatrist, should you need it during a medico-legal matter. 
  • Defence Update– periodical publication and blog to keep you up-to-date with relevant practical medico-legal advice and case studies. 
  • Specialty Updates– supplements for key specialties to inform you of emerging risks and specialty specific medico-legal matters.
  • Financial stability– responsible stewardship of Members’ funds. We manage all elements of a strong insurance business and invest in Member value by delivering quality support services. 
  • Up to 20% off medical publications, reference and text books.
  • Corporate Social Responsibility– giving back to our community, including a Charity of Choice association with Beyondblue to help support doctors’ mental health. 
  • Local presence, national support with offices in NSW, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC and WA.

Premium Support Scheme Eligibility

MDA National Insurance has entered into an agreement with the Department of Health and Ageing and Medicare Australia to administer the the Premium Support Scheme (PSS) on the government's behalf.

The PSS is an Australian Government Scheme introduced to assist eligible doctors meet the costs of their medical indemnity insurance. For further information and to determine eligibility, click here.

Prefer to speak to us in person?

Medical indemnity can be complex. We are here to help, so please contact us for more detail on 1800 011 255 or email

Apply online today or contact your local Business Development Specialist to arrange a personalised meeting to discuss your medical indemnity needs.

MDA National Insurance Pty Ltd (MDA National Insurance) is a general insurer authorised by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA). MDA National Insurance Pty Ltd holds an Australian Financial Services Licence Number 238073, issued by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) and is authorised to advise and deal in general insurance products. Members of MDA National have access to insurance policies issued by MDA National Insurance.

For information on commercial and domestic insurance products, visit the website of AMA Financial Services (when clicking you will be leaving the MDA National website, MDA National does not accept any responsibility for the content displayed) or call them on 08 9273 3077.

Let us know as soon as you have received your Fellowship or decide to start practising in a private practice category. MDA National can provide you with premium reductions in your first four years of private practice, starting with an 80% premium reduction in the first year.

Your premium starts as a proportion of the mature rate and steps up until the mature rate is reached.


Starting in Private Practice


We understand that starting or joining a private practice can have various startup challenges and costs. To alleviate some of the financial burden associated with commencing in private practice MDA National have premium reductions in the first four years you undertake private practice*. Contact our Member Services team as soon as you obtain your Fellowship or decide to start practising in a private practice category to see if you are eligible. The premium in the first year of your private practice is an 80% reduction on the mature premium payable. The subsequent years involve incremental increases until the mature rate is reached, helping members transition into full premium payments gradually.

*Subject to Underwriting approval and certain eligibility criteria.


Our continuing in-house support

Once you’re all set up, our Support in Practice team are here, by your side, providing the resources and personalised advice that you need through your journey in private practice.

Not a Member?

Request a quote for our professional indemnity insurance, providing you with peace of mind and extensive cover as you start out in private practice.