Although we specialise in helping connect people with expert personal injury solicitors, we can also help with medical negligence claims.
On this page, you can learn about the definition of medical negligence, examples of how it can happen, how to take legal action, the evidence required to prove a claim, and how our service can benefit you.
What Is Medical Negligence?
Medical negligence refers to incidents in which treatment for health conditions, injuries or illnesses has fallen below the expected standard of care. This could arise because of an omission or a mistake. It is also referred to as clinical negligence.
Below, we look at examples of medical negligence, but in short, it could arise because of a failure to provide the right prescription medication or to correctly diagnose a broken bone.
Negligent medical treatment can have significant consequences on the individuals it affects. For instance, you could miss out on crucial cancer treatment, or a broken bone may not set and heal in the right way.
Examples Of Medical Negligence That You Can Claim For
There is a wide range of incidents of negligence that you can claim for in this area of law. Here’s a breakdown:
- Never Events – these incidents of medical negligence get their name because they should never happen in a clinical setting. Examples include a surgeon leaving instruments or objects in a person’s body or operating on the wrong body part.
- Prescription And Medication Errors – if your pharmacist gives you the wrong prescription, or if your GP prescribes the wrong medication or one you’re allergic to, you could claim if you go on to suffer harm
- Misdiagnoses – if a medical professional fails to diagnose you, delays your diagnosis or diagnoses you with a different condition or injury altogether, you could claim.
- Premature Discharge – if you’ve been sent home too early from hospital, you could claim if you go on to suffer harm
- Surgical Errors – if an error has arose during surgery, causing you unnecessary harm and suffering, you could claim for this too
This list is by no means exhaustive but represents some of the most common examples of medical negligence that we help our clients with.
How To Make A Claim For Negligent Medical Treatment
In order to make a medical negligence claim, you need to fulfil a set of criteria. These are:
- That the medical professional treating you owed you a duty of care. In many cases, this duty will always be present.
- That healthcare professional breached their duty of care. For example, a surgeon leaving a scalpel in your body after surgery.
- As a result of that breach, you suffered harm, such as infection or an untreated illness that worsens.
- That you issue legal proceedings within 3 years of either the date the negligence occurred or the date upon which you gained knowledge that medical negligence could have contributed to your condition.
In many cases, a medical negligence solicitor such as those on our panel will look to see if you meet these criteria before taking on your claim. However, we can offer advice and guidance on this. Simply call us for free using the number at the top of this page.
What Evidence Do I Need To Claim?
In order to make a claim for medical negligence, it’s necessary to prove your case with the help of evidence. There is a variety of types that you can obtain and that your solicitor can obtain too. Below, you can find a breakdown, but if you have any questions or would like more support with obtaining evidence, please don’t hesitate to get in touch:
- In many medical negligence claims, you may receive a letter from a hospital, trust, GP surgery or pharmacy admitting that an error has occurred and explaining the next steps. This will form a key piece of evidence in your case.
- Witness evidence – if anyone attended medical appointments with you and can support your case, their evidence could prove useful.
- Copies of prescriptions or medication packets or bottles – in cases of medication errors, retaining copies of what you took could prove vital.
- A log of your suffering – if you endured pain or illness over a period of time, recalling or making a note of the symptoms experienced and their severity can help give a clear idea of your experience
As part of a claim, your medical negligence solicitor will also look to obtain specialist medical evidence from an independent expert. This will be arranged by them, with the costs covered by them too.
Can I Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis?
Just like with personal injury claims, No WIn No Fee agreements also apply to medical negligence claims and they operate in the same way.
No Win No Fee is a phrase you may have heard before. It simply means that if your medical negligence solicitor does not recover compensation in your case, you won’t be obligated to pay their fees.
It also means you don’t need to pay any fees upfront or while the claim progresses.
If your claim is a success, you’ll pay a small percentage of your compensation award to your lawyer. This covers the legal costs they incurred in representing you.
If you’d like to check to see if you can make a No Win No Fee medical negligence claim, please get in touch with us for free on the number at the top of this page.
How We Can Help You Claim Compensation
Here at PersonalInjuryClaimsUK.org.uk, we offer a specialist support service for anyone interested in making a compensation claim.
From the moment you get in touch, we offer reliable advice that comes with no strings attached. If you don’t want to proceed with a claim, that’s fine.
If you would like to take legal action, we can connect you with specialists in medical negligence claims who can get started on your case right away.
Call us on the number at the top of this page to get started. You can also write to us here.