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The unique combination of Defence Association, Union and solid insurance protection means that your interests will always be kept at the forefront by an organisation dedicated to defending your reputation and protecting your interests.


There are four benefits which operate alongside each other, the combination of which delivers a particularly formidable form of defence and support for pharmacists.

1. Professional Indemnity Insurance*

Underwritten by certain syndicates at Lloyd’s, the insurance provided is designed specifically for PDA members and is fully regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. The arrangements that have been put in place not only provide the financial capacity that enables PDA members to be supported in the most expensive cases, but they also enable PDA members to automatically comply with the GPhC and PSNI requirement to operate with the protection of Professional Indemnity cover. Benefits include; 

A choice of £5,000,000 or £10,000,000 limit Professional Indemnity*

Cover of claims against pharmacists for acts of negligence, error or omission, or providing wrongful advice; any of which has resulted in bodily or mental injury, sickness, disease or death occurring whilst under the normal duties of a pharmacist. This also includes cover for ‘Good Samaritan’ acts out of work and protection against claims of libel, slander or breach of confidentiality.

£5,000,000 Public Liability (PL) Insurance*

£500,000 Legal Defence Costs Insurance* To cover the payment of legal fees for the following: 

To cover the payment of legal fees for the following:

  • Employment Tribunals in the event that negotiations do not bring a dispute to a satisfactory conclusion and legal fees are required for an advocate to progress a claim in a tribunal
  • Professional Tribunals where legal representation is necessary at a coroner’s inquest or fatal accident inquiry because there is an investigation into a death potentially caused by malpractice and also at GPhC or PSNI hearings (which bring into question a pharmacist’s conduct and fitness to practice)
  • Prosecutions brought as a result of non-deliberate criminal acts in the conduct of a pharmacist’s professional responsibilities, or for any civil proceedings brought under the Equality or Data Protection Acts
  • In-Depth Taxation Investigation into your personal tax affairs arising out of employed or self-employed income
  • Injury and Fatal Accidents pursuing damages if you have been injured by a third party
  • Contract Disputes following the purchase of a product or service exceeding £250 in value
  • Jury Service Reimbursement of lost income not recoverable from an employer or the courts
  • 24 hour Legal Advice Line for members who wish to discuss legal issues.

2. Membership of the PDA

The PDA is a not-for-profit organisation and nearly 85% of our activity is non-insurance related, involving incidents which are very important to pharmacists’ employment and their practice. Claims that are covered under the insurance contract are handled entirely by the office based pharmacists and lawyers who are experienced in defending pharmacists in a wide range of situations. This means that the service provided is always very familiar with the professional nuances of pharmacy. There are many extra discretionary benefits of being a member of the PDA, which are provided over and above the protection provided by dint of the insurance cover:

    • Employment and Professional Support in employment disputes and professional investigations into fitness to practise, PDA lawyers are on hand to give peace of mind by providing instant support and advice
    • Locum Contract Dispute Resolution – intervening where there is a dispute over non-payment of fees
    • Professional Advice provided by pharmacists experienced in pharmacy law, ethics and managing professional dilemmas
    • Risk Management Development producing guidance and the twice yearly in-house magazine, Insight, to help pharmacists keep up to date with developments in the profession and to make their practice more robust to improve patient safety
    • Active Education and Research Agenda – commissioning research through formal links with credible organisations and delivering educational awareness events
    • Proactive Lobbying actively involving the PDA in pressing for the development of the profession; talking to Government and the movers and shakers of pharmacy and other professions to put forward the interests of the individual pharmacist as opposed to those of employing organisations
    • Interactive Communication via initiatives such as focus group meetings, surveys, petitions, conferences and regular emails informing members of important developments 

3. Membership of the PDA Union

Enhances the membership benefits to include automatic rights of representation in disputes with employers and certain collective bargaining rights. This means that in serious job-threatening situations, PDA Union officials are able to accompany members to disciplinary meetings with employers.

The PDA Union provides significant additional authority as it seeks to influence employers, government and other decision-making bodies through a democratic mandate of a large group of practising pharmacists. Affiliated to numerous umbrella union organisations, both in the UK and abroad, the PDA Union has many additional opportunities to exert its influence for the benefit of pharmacists. Although union membership is automatic at ‘no extra cost’ to members, there is an opt-out option if applicants wish only to be part of the defence association.

4. Supporting Pharmacists Support Charity

PDA makes a contribution of £1 for every member to the Pharmacists Support charity every year. With more than £30,000 being donated each year, this makes the PDA the biggest single regular contributor to this important charity. Pharmacists, trainee pharmacists and pharmacy students can be reassured that should they run into personal difficulties such as emotional or financial hardship that the PDA may not be able to support directly, the PDA supports an important pharmacy charity that does. 

Additionally there is PDA Plus 

Giving access to a range of specially-negotiated preferential services for PDA members, whether it’s a meal out with friends, your weekly grocery shop, income protection cover or renewing your car insurance, PDA Plus likely has a preferential deal that could save you money.


*The insurance included with PDA membership is arranged and administered by The Pharmacy Insurance Agency (PIA) Ltd who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063).

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

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