For most people, their largest asset is not their home, but their future income. If you were aged 30, with gross income of £60,000 per annum, you would earn £2,280,000 of income to the state retirement (SRA) age of 68…more of course if your income or SRA increases.
As all of your future plans are reliant on this income, it would seem sensible to make sure this is protected. However, it is surprising how many sessional GPs have no cover in place whatsoever.
If you were unfortunate to be unable to work due to illness or disability, as a locum you would have no sick pay arrangements in place. If you are a salaried GP, you would typically have a contract from the practice, often mirroring the NHS contractual sick pay but from the date you started at the practice. This initially would be one month’s full pay followed by two months’ half pay. Nothing would then be received, but after 12 months you may receive an ill health retirement pension from the NHS, but this is not guaranteed and, if paid, is unlikely to be significant in the early years of your career.