Contact Law blog

Medical negligence

NHS pilots mediation service

The National Health Service Litigation Authority (NHS LA) has announced a pilot mediation scheme to resolve patient disputes.

Initially the scheme will be available for claims involving infant or elderly fatalities and care of the elderly.

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Serious sentence for medical negligence

In early November 2013 consultant surgeon David Sellu was convicted of manslaughter by gross negligence and sentenced to two and a half years in prison.

When presented with a patient suffering from severe abdominal pains, Sellu suspected a ruptured bowel but delayed in prescribing antibiotics and doing abdominal scans. The patient, James Hughes, went on to die and the court found that he would have stood a higher chance of surviving had Sellu treated him with the appropriate urgency.

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Care Quality Commission warning on NHS staffing levels

A story by the Telegraph published on Sunday reveals that, according to the Care Quality Commission (CQC), 26 NHS Healthcare Providers do not have enough staff ‘to keep people safe and meet their health and welfare needs’, which is the required standard of care for all parts of the health service.

The list of Healthcare Providers, situated throughout England, was compiled from the latest CQC inspections carried out as recently as November; it was obtained and made public by the Labour party.

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MMR jab blamed for partially-deaf girl’s disablement

Last week, the Daily Mail reports, a 21-year-old Scottish woman, Katie Stephen, won a ruling that her deafness in one ear was due to an adverse reaction to the triple MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) vaccine, which she was given at the age of 15 months.

She had alleged the adverse reaction was similar to the brain disease encephalitis.

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Woman wins £1.2m after growing to 6ft5in due to undiagnosed tumour

Kate Woodward, 20, grew to 1.96 metres after St James University Hospital and Leeds General Infirmary failed to diagnose a tumour on her pituitary gland, according to the BBC.

The tumour went untreated between October 2001 and September 2005 and caused excessive growth, bone abnormality and psychological problems for Ms Woodward.

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NHS faces increased number of medical negligence claims

The increased use of no-win, no-fee solicitors has meant that a growing number of NHS patients have brought medical negligence claims against medical practitioners. The increase has been so sharp that the Health Secretary, Andrew Lansley, has decided to give the NHS Litigation Authority access to significantly more financial resources in order for it to be able to pay out compensation.

According to the Times, “In the past five years the number of claims for clinical negligence have risen from 5,697 to 8,655 a year”. NHS managers and the Ministry of Justice attributes this trend to the increased use of no-win, no-fee solicitors and the fact that many patients are encouraged to sue for medical negligence. (more…)

Man seeks compensation after wrong part of brain removed

A 63-year-old former paramedic is seeking personal injury compensation after an NHS surgeon accidentally removed the wrong part of his brain during a tumour biopsy operation.

John Tunney had the operation after a tumour in his pituitary gland was discovered by a scan. However, the surgeon at Walsgrave Hospital in Coventry, removed healthy tissue instead of the tumour, leaving Mr Tunney partially sighted and in constant need of care. (more…)

Medical negligence claims – what’s the future for injured claimants?

Claimants who have been injured by medical professionals are going to find it a lot harder to bring their claims against the negligent parties in the future thanks to two moves by the government aimed at cutting costs and reducing the budget deficit. (more…)

Medical negligence Image

Medical negligence, or malpractice, is professional negligence by a health care provider in which the provided treatment is below the standard of practice and causes death or injury to the patient.

In this part of the blog we’ll cover interesting and major medical negligence cases in the news, as well as developments in the law.

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