Patient Negligence Claims
Patient negligence can be one of the most damaging forms of medical negligence. Without extensive medical knowledge, you need to have faith in your doctor, trusting that they will go through the right process to accurately diagnose your condition so you can receive the correct treatment as early as possible. While occurrences are relatively rare, particularly when considering the vast number of patients treated in the UK every year, patient misdiagnosis can occur and cause injury or even death.
What is Patient Negligence?
When they agree to treat you, a doctor, nurse, dentist or other medical professional accepts a duty of care and commit to using their knowledge and skill to resolve your medical problem or alleviate your pain. Part of this duty is obtaining informed consent – that is, talking to a patient about their treatment options and any associated risks so that they can make an informed decision about what happens to their body.
The standard process for diagnosing a condition is to examine a patient’s symptoms and find out as much information about their health as possible, before drawing up a list of potential causes. These are then investigated with further tests, scans, and referrals to experts, starting with the most logical condition first. Each possible diagnosis is ruled out until one remains.
Patient negligence and misdiagnosis happen when this process is ignored, and a practitioner fits the symptoms to the condition they believe to be the cause without adequate analysis. Misdiagnosis can take the form of missed diagnosis, where a condition is not identified at all, or incorrect diagnosis, where a condition is mistaken for another.
Patient negligence can be caused by:
- Failing to assess a patient thoroughly, including obtaining previous health information, and family health background.
- Failing to refer a patient for assessment by a specialist, or refer them for tests.
- Misreading test results.
In its most simple form, patient negligence is when a medical professional makes a mistake that they could have avoided had they done their job with due care and attention. Negligence can cause an existing illness or condition to worsen, or result in a patient suffering from a new problem. Examples of this can include:
- A patient who had to have their leg amputated below the knee after contracting a post-surgical infection caused by poor hygiene practices in a hospital.
- Brain damage resulting from lack of oxygen caused by an anaesthetic error made during an operation.
- Cancer requiring aggressive surgery and chemotherapy which would not have been necessary had a patient’s symptoms been thoroughly investigated.
Proving misdiagnosis caused you injury or harm can be complicated, but seeking legal advice from experienced lawyers at The Medical Negligence Experts can help you obtain the best possible outcome from your claim.
Claiming Compensation for Patience Negligence
Whether you were harmed at the hands of a private practitioner or you had treatment from a professional working for the NHS, a successful compensation claim for patient negligence is required to meet three specific criteria:
- Show that the standard of care you received fell below an acceptable level, and was not equal to what you could reasonably expect from a professional in that field of medicine.
- Provide evidence that shows you were directly harmed by this poor standard of care.
- Be made within three years of the event of your injury, or of the date you became aware that negligence caused your injury.
The Medical Negligence Experts also support those claiming on behalf of a loved one either because they cannot represent themselves or because they have died due to negligent medical care.
The NHS has a robust complaints process that victims and their families can use if they have been unhappy with the standard of care they have received. While it is not a legal requirement that you submit a formal complaint before you can begin a claim for compensation, the investigation and findings from a complaint can act as evidence to support your request for payment of damages.
The NHS Litigation Authority is the body that handles all request for compensation for medical negligence made against NHS practitioners. Our solicitors have a strong track record of successfully getting compensation for our clients, no matter what type of injury you have endured. Certain conditions caused by patient negligence may qualify for compensation from a specific compensation scheme. For example, the Vaccine Damage Payment Unit has funds to compensate those injured from a vaccination delivered by an NHS employee.
How Can We Help?
For your medical misdiagnosis claim to be successful, you need to demonstrate that it was medical negligence which caused your misdiagnosis, and not some other reason. The second requirement for a successful claim is that you need to have suffered injury, illness, or financial loss as the result of your misdiagnosis. Financial hardship can be lost earnings due to having to take time off work for curative treatment and recovery, or because your injury means you can no longer work.
The Medical Negligence Experts can represent you regardless of whether your medical misdiagnosis was at the hands of a private practitioner or one working for the NHS. The process is frequently lengthy, not only to collect and analyse your medical records, but also if the responsible party denies liability, or admits negligence but does not agree it was the cause of your injury.
Starting a compensation claim for medical negligence can be daunting, and we would be remiss if we did not acknowledge that it is, at times, stressful and complicated for the claimant. We always do our best to make the process as straightforward and stress-free for our clients by avoiding irrelevant legal and medical jargon, and giving you regular updates regarding the progress of your claim.
A vast majority of medical misdiagnosis claims – around 98% of those made against the NHS – are resolved out of court, which may put your mind at ease if you were worried about having a trial.
Contact The Medical Negligence Experts today and let us help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
Need some help?
Am I eligible?
If you have suffered from medical negligence in the past 3 years, the short answer is yes.
However, medical negligence can be complicated, so we recommend that you speak with one of our expert solicitors - It’s Free.
How much could I claim?
As every medical case is different, the amount of compensation paid out can differ. Varying factors lead to the final figure include: the level of negligence, earnings missed out on, future losses and more.
Our experienced team of experts will give you an indication of how much you could potentially claim.
How does the process work?
We understand that when making a claim it’s important to know what to expect and when to expect it. That’s why we make the process as transparent as possible.
Your solicitor will gather all the evidence and will notify the negligent party of your claim. With your dedicated solicitor negotiating on your behalf, you will be kept up to date every step of the way.
Why should you use us?
No Win No Fee
We offer a No Win No Fee* service on all our claims - We assess each claim on its merits with the information provided, which aids us to determine its likely success rate. This takes the risk away from you.
Expert, Family Solicitors
Our experienced solicitors are experts in securing compensation no matter the level of negligence.
We are committed to securing the best possible outcome for you, while providing friendly support every step of the way.
Personal Dedicated Solicitors
On contact, you will be allocated your own expert Medical Negligence solicitor who will be there every step of the way. You will be provided with a direct phone number and direct email address of your solicitor.
Expert patient negligence solicitors working for you
We specialise in helping victims of medical negligence claim the compensation they deserve.
We work on a No Win No Fee basis, meaning if we don’t win your case, you don’t pay! Once you make contact, your experienced solicitor will work to recover the maximum compensation you are entitled to.
Whether you are ready to make a patient negligence claim, or you would just like a free conversation with a legal professional, we have experts on hand to give you all the information you need. Take the first step to getting what you deserve by filling in our quick contact form and we will call you back whenever suits you.