The majority of clinical negligence claims must be made within three years of the patient becoming aware that problems have occurred however if you were under 18 at the time, you may still be able to pursue a claim.
A man from Oxford was recently awarded £5.7 million in compensation some 33 years after he was starved of oxygen at birth.*
Clinical negligence is undoubtedly a major drain on NHS resources, but when people don’t get the medical treatment they should it can have a lasting impact.
Outlined below are some of the most common causes of clinical negligence claims
Complications can occur during the birthing process when a baby is starved of oxygen or has another problem. Depending on the medical issue involved it can have an impact on the baby’s development as he or she gets older.
There have been a number of high profile clinical negligence claims in recent times related to complications during births which have seen large settlements reached for the long term care of those affected.
Misdiagnosis of illnesses and conditions is another area which results in clinical negligence claims. For example there have been instances of people being told they have a critical illness which subsequently turns out not to be the case. This obviously has a massive impact on their lives and those of their loved ones.
Cases of misdiagnosis can also lead to unnecessary operations being carried out which can be damaging mentally and physically to the patient and in certain circumstances may cause the patient to lose their regular level of income.
- Surgical error
While there are risks with every operation conducted, there are times when things go wrong due to the negligence of a surgeon.
The after effects of an operation that has gone wrong can last for months or years and sometimes full recovery may not be possible. When the quality of someone’s life is severely affected by the mistake of a medical practitioner, a successful claim can help to provide long term care and support for those affected.
Public health claims
It’s not just clinical negligence claims that can lead people to seek compensation due to health issues.
Public health claims for things such as food poisoning picked up at a restaurant are also commonplace although the difficulty in these cases is in being able to trace the source of any outbreak back to an individual business. This has to be done in order to be able to make a claim against the party at fault.
If you think you may have contracted an illness while in a public place such as a restaurant, hotel or sports facility you should seek professional advice as soon as possible.
Public liability claims
Public liability claims are made as a result of an injury or accident that occur on someone else’s property.
For example injuries sustained from falling objects, such as tools falling from scaffolding or slipping on a wet floor in a local high street shop.
Most businesses will have public liability insurance to cover any accidents or injuries that happen through the fault or negligence of the owner or occupier.
Public liability claims can take some time to get resolved, so if you feel you have a claim, the sooner you contact a professional to discuss your case the better.
The Co-operative Legal Services provides professional and expert help and advice for clinical negligence, public health and public liability claims in the UK.
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