We are very lucky in the UK. NHS care is usually very good and most people don’t have any problems. But occasionally things can go wrong.....
If you’ve been injured as a result of negligent medical treatment, you may be able to take legal action for compensation.
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We are specialised in clinical negligence cases and will look at your case to advise you if you have a strong claim for compensation as a result of your experience.
Give us as much information as possible when you speak with us - It will help if you keep a record of everything that’s relevant to your treatment and any paperwork you've got if you've been through the complaints procedure.
Also, keep a record of any expenses you’ve had to pay and any loss of earnings. We will decide if your case has a reasonable chance of success and should be able to give you an idea how much your compensation you might get.
What is clinical negligence?
Here are just some examples of clinical negligence. You have suffered injury because the healthcare provider:
failed to diagnose your condition or made the wrong diagnosis
made a mistake during a procedure or operation
gave you the wrong drug
didn't get your informed consent to treatment
didn't warn you about the risks of a particular treatment.
If you’ve suffered an injury as a result of medical treatment, this may be referred to as a ‘medical accident’ or ‘patient safety incident’. This doesn’t mean that your treatment was necessarily negligent. You can claim compensation only if it can be shown ‘on the balance of probability’ that:
your treatment was carried out negligently, that is, the care you received fell below medically acceptable standards, and
this directly caused your injury.
You can claim compensation for any injuries or losses suffered which were a direct result of the negligent treatment you received. This can include:
compensation for pain and suffering
payment for ongoing treatment
compensation if you can’t carry out certain activities or hobbies
loss of earnings
the cost of any extra care or equipment you may need
the cost of adapting your home
compensation for psychological damage.
A claim can be made for the next of kin of someone who has died or doesn't have capacity to make their own claim. The court will take into account certain social security benefits you get because of your injury before they decide how much compensation you’ll get.
You must start your legal claim within 3 years from when the incident happened or when you first realised you’d suffered an injury. In the case of children, the 3-year limit doesn’t start to apply until their 18th birthday. If the claim is about a patient who can’t manage their own affairs because of a mental disability, the 3-year period doesn’t apply until (and unless) they recover from their disability. In both these cases, a parent or other person close to them can make a claim on their behalf.
It’s best to take specialist advice as soon as possible after the incident - don’t leave this until the last minute. Because clinical negligence cases are so complex to investigate, its important that we have enough time to assist with your case. Contact us today to speak with someone in our team.