Can I Claim Against The NHS For Negligence?
Yes, you can. It is your legal right to claim against the NHS for medical negligence. If you have been treated negligently during your visit to any of the NHS owned hospitals, causing you to suffer unnecessary pain, trauma or complications, then you can make claims against the particular NHS trust or the NHS staff responsible.
At NHS negligence claims, we have specialist medical negligence NHS solicitors who have the expertise having represented a lot of clients over the years and have an enviable record of successfully winning best possible NHS compensation payouts for our clients.
The aim of securing compensation is to as much as possible see that you return to the state you were before the negligent treatment occurred. The compensation you will receive will be commensurate with the severity of injury, impact of the injury on your quality of life, estimated time of recovery or future prognosis as well as financial losses incurred.
More importantly is that after successful claims against the NHS, the NHS can make internal investigations into the cause of the negligent treatment and take measures to see that another person is not affected.
What is NHS Medical Negligence?
NHS negligence describes a situation where you are not provided with the right standard of care which you are entitled to during your visit to the NHS. When you or your loved one is negligently treated and you suffer pain, trauma or avoidable complications as a result of mistakes that could well have been avoided, then you may have grounds to make a claim against the NHS for negligence.
Making a compensation claim against the NHS or suing the NHS for negligence is not an easy task and requires the services of specialist medical NHS negligence solicitors who will discuss with you, evaluate your claims, give you free medical negligence advice and legal advice against the NHS which is vital towards a successful claim.
Examples of negligent treatment which can cause an individual to make NHS negligence claims include the following:
- Misdiagnosis which may be failure to diagnose, late diagnosis or wrong diagnosis
- Delayed or wrong treatment as a result of incorrect diagnosis
- Surgical errors
- Failure to carry out proper physical examinations
- Failure to carry out or recommend relevant tests
- Drug prescription errors or mistakes with administering medications
- Failure to refer the patient to a specialist for further medical examination
- Failure to warn the patient of the risks of a treatment procedure and obtain their informed consent
- Negligent treatment during prenatal, delivery or postnatal care which could cause injuries to the mother and/or child.
For any of these negligent actions or similar ones you or your loved one may have suffered, you can sue the NHS for negligence. If you have suffered psychological distress, you may also consider suing the NHS for emotional distress. In terms of misdiagnosis, you may also reach out to a solicitor to help you with suing the NHS for misdiagnosis.
NHS Medical Negligence Claims Statistics
The NHS, is known as one of the most organized government owned healthcare establishments composed of experienced and highly trained medical personnel who are saddled with the responsibility of overseeing the health needs of millions of people every year.
Although the NHS provides a very high standard of healthcare delivery, one which is highly commendable, cases of NHS negligence continue to occur especially as medical professionals are oftentimes stretched by the volume of patients and targets they have to meet every day.
In 2018/2019 year for instance, 11,625 NHS claims were closed with 6943 claims successfully awarded compensation for various kinds of negligence. The total amount of NHS compensation paid that year was £1.778 billion. That same year, 10,678 new claims were opened against several NHS departments with the A&E department, Orthopaedic surgery and Obstetrics department recording the highest number of claims. Claims against the obstetrics department had the highest amount of compensation claims. The following year, the NHS Resolution paid £2.3billion in successful NHS claims with about £61.4 million spent on GP negligence claims alone.
As a result of increase in the number of claims and the settlement payouts made, provisions for NHS claims settlements were increased to £83.4 billion as of March, 31st 2019. According to the Department of Health and Social Care in the UK, the NHS current budget for the 2020/2021 year is £212.1 billion.
How Do I Make A Claim Against The NHS?
During our consultation sessions with potential clients, questions have been asked which include, “can I sue the NHS”, “how to sue NHS for misdiagnosis” or “how to sue a hospital for negligence”.
It is important to note that before you decide about taking the NHS to court for negligence, you should be prepared to prove the existence of negligence and show that the negligent act was directly responsible for the current suffering you or your loved one is experiencing.
The NHS has a responsibility to care for its patients and provide the best possible care for them. This is known as “Duty of care.” Every medical professional owes a duty of care to his or her patients and when they deviate from that duty of care, there could be very devastating consequences for the patients, some which may never be treated and will plague the individual for life.
This why the chances of winning NHS compensation claims is greatly boosted when the claimant is able to establish the following:
- The NHS owed the claimant a duty of care
- The NHS failed in their duty of care to the claimant
- The breach of duty of care is the direct cause of the pain, injury, emotional distress or complications suffered.
- Additionally, the patient has suffered damages financially, socially, mentally or otherwise as a result of the life-changing event
- Abnormal bone growth such as bone dysplasia
In summary, this is known as proving “liability” and “causation.” These events must be established beyond reasonable doubt for a claim to be successful.
NHS Complaints Procedure Compensation
Although complaints do not result in compensation, it is always a good place to start. Here you can register your displeasure and dissatisfaction over the quality of care you received and why you think it was negligent. It is your right to make a complaint; also know that you are not the only one who is making a complaint. In 2018/19 year, there were 208,924 formal complaints written against the NHS for different reasons.
Complaints can help you understand what really transpired as well as help you build your case should you decide to make a claim. NHS complaints should be made within one year of noticing the negligent treatment while you will receive a reply from the NHS in four working days, acknowledging your letter. They will also make their investigations and give you a formal reply in not more than four months. This can better inform your decision. You can find modalities on how to make your claims and who to address them at the nearest NHS PALS office. Details of their offices can be found on their website or you can dial NHS 111.
Your complaints should be written in a clear, calm and collected manner and should not include any abusive or insulting remarks. It has to state clearly the subject of your complaint, the events that transpired, the NHS staff involved and your reason for dissatisfaction.
You should also note that you should make your complaints as soon as possible as you have a limited time to make your claims and making complaints does not pause the time you have to make a claim.
How To Make A Claim Against A Hospital
Making hospital compensation claims against the NHS requires that you hire specialist NHS solicitors to help you with your claims. Hiring a specialist solicitor speeds up the entire claims process, increases your chances of winning, provides you an ally and support you need at such a difficult time, gives you peace of mind and spare time to focus on your recovery as well as protects you from having to worry about endless paperwork that comes with making claims thereby reducing your burden.
Our medical negligence solicitors are dedicated to ensure that you get the best legal representation so as to get the justice you deserve as well as the right compensation amount.
The claims process involves:
- You contact us, we assign you a personal lawyer who will discuss with you, determine if you have a claim, your chances of winning and offer you NHS free legal advice which will be valuable for your claims.
- We will proceed to fund your claim using any of the available medical negligence funding types best suited to your claims
- Build your case by gathering evidence to support your claims
- Write a letter of claim to notify the defendants and establish liability
- Registering your claims in a law court; which does not necessarily mean that your claims will go to a trial but it helps to see that both parties play their respective roles, meet deadlines and ensure a swift resolution.
- Negotiating a favourable compensation value and payment
Medical Negligence NHS Payouts
The amount you can receive for compensation will depend on the specifics of your claims. therefore, it is not fixed. For instance, an NHS injury at work compensation will be different from an NHS misdiagnosis compensation.
According to the NHS, the average compensation payout is £50,000 although compensation amounts can range anywhere between £1,000 for minor injuries and to millions of pounds for severe injuries. We can also give you a realistic estimate of what you can expect as compensation using our NHS compensation calculator.
No Win No Fee Against NHS
Our consultation sessions are free of charge where we will assign to you a personal specialist negligence claims solicitor to discuss your case with you. If after evaluating your case and we are convinced that you have a good chance of success, we will proceed to represent you under our No Win No Fee policy where you can sue the NHS without any financial risks to you.
This means that you do not have to make any payment to us for legal fees or other costs incurred during investigations and the entire claims. You will also be protected from making any payments to us even if your claims were unsuccessful. This is because we take out an “After The Event” insurance cover on your behalf to protect you from any financial implications.
When your claims are successfully settled, will we take out no more than 25% of your compensation payout as a success fee.
NHS Negligence Claims Time Limit
Making NHS claims is your legal right and you do not have to hesitate to make your claims for wrongs done to you especially as you have a limited time to do so. You only have three years from the date of negligence or when you first noticed it to make your claims.
There are some exceptions to this rule which includes claims involving children, physically disabled or mentally incapacitated. We also have a page which explains further how you can make claims on behalf of a loved one.
We encourage you to contact us by filling our online claims assessment form and one of us will reach out to you in no time.