BUPA Insurance and Orthopaedics
5th December 2007

background on this article

In August 2007 BUPA Insurance sent out a request for information (RFI) to a certain number of orthopaedic consultants. This RFI was a detailed document which involved information about each consultant’s personal, professional, academic and financial background. The reason for this request was unclear but subsequently in October 2007 BUPA Insurance wrote to a number of consultants (number again unclear) suggesting that they were looking at certain quality and other strategic initiatives in orthopaedic surgery. It was also been made clear by BUPA Insurance that they are engaged in some sort of pilot schemes with six groups of orthopaedic consultants to review certain aspects of orthopaedic care.

The overall professional stance on this has been muted as there has been no general approach by BUPA Insurance although the British Orthopaedic Association has made it clear that quality issues are professional matters and not one to be entrusted to an insurer.

There are some strong similarities in this BUPA orthopaedic RFI approach to their approach in ophthalmology although these two clinical specialties are quite different. The true motives of BUPA Insurance in this matter remain cloaked. The profession will support cost effective and best evidence based clinical practice but this should be by professional engagement rather than centrally imposed diktat.

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