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What is hospital negligence?
Hospital negligence is any kind of substandard care that directly causes harm to a patient and takes place within a hospital. This could be during an emergency situation where you were forced to visit A&E, during scheduled treatment or when attending specialist appointments. All hospitals have a duty of care to provide the highest possible standard of treatment at all times. When there is a failure in this duty of care, it is medical negligence.
Types of hospital negligence claims
At Patient Claim Line, we work with medical negligence claims every day. The most common issues and hospital negligence claims we handle include:
- Hospital acquired Infections – Around 31 people per day develop an infection as a result of being in hospital, such as MRSA, Clostridium Difficile, and MSSA
- Infection negligence – Often related to surgical errors where there was a failure to sterilise equipment, or cases where there was a failure to isolate patients with serious infections that may spread.
- Delays in treatment or surgery – Certain illnesses require immediate treatment and any delay can lead to tragic outcomes. This includes dangerous infections like sepsis or injuries that could lead to cauda equina syndrome.
- Misdiagnosis – You may have been misdiagnosed during an emergency appointment or at a consultation with a specialist, for example a cancer misdiagnosis
- Amputation – Hospital related amputations can occur when patients were not treated quickly enough or during surgical errors.
- Treatment or medication errors – If you prescribed the wrong course or dose of treatment you may have suffered serious side effects.
- Surgical errors – when something goes wrong during surgery, be that wrong site surgery, a perforation or retained products
- Accident & Emergency – A&E negligence is usually a result of long waiting times and a lack of adequate care.
- Errors of omission – this could include failure to administer antibiotics or thrombo-embolic prophylaxis
Although these are the most common hospital negligence claims we deal with for patients and their families, other situations may arise that create cause for a claim against a hospital.
Failure to monitor a patient
One of the most common cases of hospital negligence that we see is a failure to monitor a patient. As part of a medical professional’s duty of care, an integral part of their duty to all patients is to regularly monitor and assess their condition. When monitoring a patient, professionals should assess any changes and act quickly and precisely if there are significant or telling signs of a reaction to surgery or treatment. Any failure can lead to multiple complications in the near and distant future. Examples of monitoring a patient include but are not limited to:
- Identifying infection after surgery, or hypoglycemia in diabetic patients
- Signs of distress or illness which may help diagnose disease or injury
- Changes to mother or baby’s health during labour
- Changes during surgery to a patient’s condition
- Assessing the patient’s condition immediately after surgery and during recovery
- While they are under anaesthesia
We handled a case for a young woman who developed pressure sores after not being monitored adequately enough during labour. She was able to make a full recovery and the NHS Trust altered their procedures to prevent it happening again.
What can I expect when making a claim for hospital negligence?
Starting the compensation process is easy, following an initial phone call we will talk you through everything we need and what will happen. If your case is successful, you can expect to be awarded compensation that can help you with:
- Payment for ongoing treatment or rehabilitation
- Loss of income
- Necessary medical equipment or outside care
- The impact on your future prospects
- Pain and suffering
Suing the NHS
Bringing a case against a hospital may seem overwhelming given the size of the institution. All trusts are expected to deliver a good standard of care, and those who don’t should be held accountable. As one of the largest and oldest national institutions for medical care, the National Health Service (NHS) plays a significant role in treating millions of patients each year.
Individuals trust the NHS to provide medical care for an array of health needs, including routine screenings, treatments for mild to severe long-term conditions, emergency services and prescriptions. Given the breadth of care services offered at NHS trusts, it is not surprising that things can, and do, go wrong. In addition, with waiting times at hospitals continuing to rise there are now over 4000 excess deaths that could have been avoided. These alarming numbers indicate exactly why NHS Trusts should be held accountable so they can improve and offer better care for every patient in the UK.
Find out if your trust is listed in our local claims guides
Private Hospital Trusts
You may have chosen to go private with your healthcare, either because of long wait times or wanting a higher standard of care. Unfortunately errors and medical negligence do still occur when undergoing treatment privately. You are able to make a claim against a private healthcare trust for all of the same reasons you could sue the NHS. The process may be slightly different because not all private health care providers work at the hospital where the treatment was carried out. You may need to pursue the individual though thor own insurance or the hospital’s third party insurance. They may also be less likely to admit liability. When agreeing to use private health care you will often sign a contract, it will need to be proven that the terms of this contract were broken and the outcome was not as expected.
Patient Claim Line can help you claim against a private hospital trust and, just as they would with the NHS, our expert solicitors will take care of everything for you.
Why choose Patient Claim Line for your hospital negligence case?
Claims for hospital infections, misdiagnosis and incorrect hospital treatment come to our solicitors each and every day. We deal with around 1 in 10 medical negligence claims made within the UK, which means we have helped clients face the majority of hospital trusts over the years. Our legal team has over 400 years combined experience in fighting and winning hospital negligence claims.
No Win No Fee Hospital Negligence Claims
At Patient Claim Line, it costs you nothing to find out if you have a case, as we always work on a no win, no fee basis with no upfront costs. If you do not have a case, or if the case is not successful once started, so long as you have worked with us and cooperated, you will walk away without having to pay a penny. That’s our promise to you and your family. Contact us today to see if you have a viable claim for hospital related negligence.
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Medical Neglience FAQs
Meet the medical negligence team
Director of Medical Negligence Serious Injury
Peter leads the Medical Negligence Serious Injury department, which now boasts some of our most knowledgeable, dedicated and hardworking team members.
Peter is dedicated to supporting victims of catastrophic medical negligence injuries and endeavours to provide a clear and coherent approach to claims. He recognises the effects serious injuries can have and therefore ensures his customers’ need for support is met. Peter also has a vast amount of experience working with customers who have been injured abroad and is able to act under international law to provide the best outcomes.Email me
Head of Medical Negligence
Christian is Head of Medical Negligence at Patient Claim Line and has specialised in clinical negligence claims since qualifying in 1998; having dealt with a wide variety of claims throughout his career. He is also featured in the Legal 500 as a recommended claimant solicitor in the North West.
Christian qualified as a solicitor in 1998, specialising in clinical negligence. From 2010 onward he has had a particular interest in gynaecological and urogynaecological claims, having represented several hundred claimants in the George Rowland Litigation against the Liverpool Women’s and Aintree Hospitals. This investigated the treatment given to women in the Merseyside area over several decades, and in particular focused on the introduction and development of mesh into the UK in both the treatment of stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse. The development of this area involved pursuing claims under a unique ADR protocol with the NHS and also looking to develop the current thinking on the valuation of compensation for complex urinary symptoms. He has successfully recovered hundreds of thousands of pounds in compensation on behalf of my clients.
Christian was also involved in setting up and chairing a Claimant Support Group for those involved in the Rowland litigation, which provided a discussion forum for the many women who were left isolated and damaged by negligent gynaecological treatment. He now co-ordinates the firm’s mesh claims and has delivered training and commented extensively on the medico-legal implications of urogynaecological / mesh complications. He is a member of APIL, Liverpool Law Society and Legal 500 recommended.Email me
Francesca Paul is an Associate, Senior Solicitor and Team Leader within the Clinical Negligence Department. She is one of the driving Solicitors in the Group Litigation Team dealing with this niche and specialist area of work that Fletchers undertakes.
Francesca previously worked in Nottingham, dealing with Group Action work. She now works at Fletchers, bringing with her those years of experience heading up a team of 10 people. Francesca is involved in the early identification of potential new Group Litigation Work and analyses information from the collective pool of new enquiries into the business, of which there are hundreds per week looking for hot spots or recurrent issues which might suggest a potential pool of Claimants.
One of the highlights for Francesca and her team is that they have successfully recovered over a million pounds in compensation for clients who have received treatment from a single orthopaedic surgeon who was operating in the Colchester area. Her role requires a specific set of skills, patience and a forensic approach to detail whilst being able to see the wider picture.
Francesca has previously acted for a claimant in a case that reached the Supreme Court in the case of NA v Nottinghamshire County Council.Email me
Team Leader/Senior Solicitor
Sion is a team leader and senior solicitor with many years’ experience in dealing with a wide range of medical specialisms and different types of injuries. He is an experienced medical negligence solicitor and manages a team of lawyers within our department.
Sion joined Fletchers in 2018 as a Team Leader in the Medical Negligence Department. Throughout his 24 year legal career, he has specialised in conducting medical negligence claims on behalf of Claimants, previously working for other highly ranked leading firms in the field.
He has undertaken claims covering the full spectrum of medical specialisms, clinical settings, categories of defendant and types of negligent medical care and treatment.
These include high value and complex maximum severity cases, such as those involving limb amputations and permanent neurological injuries.
Sion is experienced at representing bereaved families at inquests and has a particular interest in fatal accident claims.Email me
"Now we have peace of mind"
My husband, Nick, went back and forth to the doctors for a long time and tried everything the doctor recommended. But his illness got worse, to the point that he was in agony.
In the end we got so desperate that we asked for a referral. The doctor was reluctant, so we had to consult a private hospital. That’s when we found out there was a tumour. It took years from the onset of his illness to finally start cancer treatment.
He used to be a man with a lot to live for, but in the end he was in so much pain that he withdrew from the family. He became angry that nobody had helped him sooner, and the legal team were able to give him the validation that he was desperately seeking. The NHS confirmed if they had done more, Nick would still be alive today.