What is clinical negligence?
Also known as Medical Negligence, Clinical Negligence is when medical treatment has gone wrong, usually making your condition worse than it was before. Obviously, this is a difficult area, as many people don't like taking action against their doctor or the NHS. But if you or a family member has suffered due to clinical negligence, you really should claim compensation.
Can I claim against the NHS?
Yes, most clinical negligence claims in the UK are made against the NHS, as it has overall responsibility for most of the GP surgeries and hospitals in Britain. We know that most people love the NHS, and so do we. The fact is though, that if a doctor or other medical professional gets it wrong, the quality of your life can be massively affected. So claiming compensation from the NHS isn't about getting a big cheque and going on holiday. Clinical negligence compensation is simply designed to put you back in the situation you were before the incident occurred, as far as that is possible. In most cases, claims against the NHS also help them to improve their services, as identifying mistakes helps to make sure they don't happen again.
What sort of medical mistakes are most likely to happen?
Obviously, operations do go wrong sometimes and doctors can fail to recognise the symptoms of some dangerous conditions. This can happen in all sorts of cases, but some of the ones we see most often include:
- Failure to diagnose appendicitis, which can then turn into peritonitis if the appendix bursts
- Failure to diagnose an ectopic pregnancy
- Rupture of the bowel during a colonoscopy
- Fitting the wrong size of artificial knee or hip
The human body is very complex though, and there are lots of other examples of clinical negligence that can lead to compensation claims.
Will making a compensation claim affect the treatment I get?
It's quite natural for you to worry about this happening, but we have honestly never heard of a case where someone's treatment has been affected by making a clinical negligence compensation claim. Doctors and nurses are incredibly professional people, and where something has gone wrong with your treatment in the past, they will be firmly focused on looking after you as well as they possibly can, and making sure that nothing else goes wrong.
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