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Can You Sue The NHS For Medical Negligence?

If you have suffered a personal injury caused by the NHS you may be able to claim compensation. Your case will be reviewed by our panel of legal firms who will be able to tell you how much you could be owed.

What are NHS negligence cases?

NHS negligence cases typically concern medical errors that result in a patient’s injury or death. The incidents involve the medical team making mistakes or performing acts that are not in line with the medical community’s standards of practice.

Medical negligence occurs when medical professionals make mistakes or fail in their duty of care. Mistakes that worsen an existing condition or injury can happen as a result of a misdiagnosis or improper treatment.

Examples of medical negligence come in a huge range of variations from incorrect prescriptions and incorrect medication from your GP to a misdiagnosis that led to further illness. Surgical errors are also involved in medical negligence as well as infections due to poor hygiene.

NHS medical negligence cases in the UK

Suing the NHS may feel unethical to some people due to the current strain across all departments, however, the institution has a significant duty of care and mistakes should be rectified to prevent them from recurring in the future. If you believe you have suffered at the hands of NHS medical negligence you are not alone. In fact, between 2021/2022 there were a total of 15,078 new claims, up 13% from the previous year. The resolution figure for this period was a whopping 2.4 billion, a figure that has been increasing over the last five years. It is worth noting that 86.7% of these claims reached a settlement and the cost allocated for such negligence equated to around 7% of the NHS’ total budget.

The majority of claims involved emergency medicine, followed closely by orthopaedic surgery, obstetrics, general surgery, and finally gynaecology. The most costly area of medical negligence claims was within obstetrics which made up 12% of all claims.

Another important statistic outlined by the latest NHS Resolution Annual Report was that 77% of claims were able to be settled without court proceedings, something the NHS is keen to build upon with tactful dispute resolution approaches.

Did you know?

Between 2021/2022 there were a total of 15,078 new medical negligence claims in the UK, up 13% from the previous year.

How to make an NHS medical negligence claim

In simple terms you need to be able to prove the following:

If the NHS or another healthcare provider has already admitted responsibility for your current circumstances you should be able to secure interim payments with the help of your chosen legal team. An interim payment is the funds sent to cover treatment, healthcare, and financial burdens while you wait for your final compensation settlement.

NHS medical negligence claims differ from personal injury claims, the claimant must prove both fault and avoidable harm. With this in mind, the claimant must be able to show the medical professional(s) failed to adequately fulfil their duty to you as a patient. In addition, with regard to avoidable harm, it must be proven that this failure caused you harm that was avoidable, for example, your injury or illness was worsened as a result.

There are essentially two claim routes to make against the NHS and these are ‘negligence’ or ‘causation’. Negligence occurs when staff members fail to do something, which in turn meant they did not meet standards. Causation is a mistake that directly causes you physical or psychological harm, such as a surgical error.

If possible you should make copies of all your medical records and reports for evidence for your claim as this documentation can highlight any causation and or negligence.

Don’t worry if this all sounds too daunting, that’s the job of the legal experts to sort.

What is the time limit for making a NHS claim?

You will usually need to open a medical negligence claim within three years of the date of knowledge of your negligent treatment. In some instances, the claims period is shorter or longer. For example, children affected by medical negligence will be able to claim any time before turning 18. If your child is 18, they will fall under the three-year rule and a claim must be pursued by age 21. Alternatively, if a person lacks the mental capacity to make their own claim, there is no time limit to make the claim.

Did you know?

77% of claims were able to be settled without court proceedings.

How long do NHS medical negligence claims take?

A number of factors influence how long it takes for a medical negligence claim to be settled. The severity of an injury and whether or not the NHS or private healthcare provider accepts responsibility will affect this process. A fairly straightforward case can often be settled within a matter of months, however, a more complicated case can take several years.

Don’t Delay. Check Now.

Don’t miss out on £100’s or even £1,000’s in compensation you could be entitled to. Starting a claim only takes 5 minutes, so why not do it now?