Cancer Negligence Claims
Big healthcare breakthroughs have seen a significant improvement when it comes to the diagnosis and treatment of different medical conditions. Despite this level of advancement, however, learning that you have cancer is a difficult experience. Even more overwhelming than being diagnosed with cancer is discovering that your condition has been made worse as a result of negligent treatment or cancer misdiagnosis. If you think your medical professional has misdiagnosed you or treated you poorly and this has resulted in harm, you may be entitled to a claim for cancer negligence.
At nhsnegligenceclaim.com, we understand how stressful and overwhelming cancer negligence can be. Our specialist cancer negligence claims solicitors are experienced in handling all types of cancer related claims, and will fight on your behalf to secure the compensation you deserve.
What is Cancer?
Cancer refers to the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells that can potentially destroy normal body tissue. These abnormal cells create a tumour and, if left untreated can cause a number of problems, including:
- Spreading from the part of the body it started to other parts of the body via the bloodstream or lymph vessels;
- Pushing nearby organs, nerves and blood vessels, causing them pressure.
There are over 100 types of cancer, as cancers are usually named after the organs or tissues they originate from.
Cancer negligence can take different forms, including poor treatment of the condition, cancer misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis. Whatever form it takes, cancer negligence can cause a patient harm and require more aggressive treatment; definitely more than would have been administered if diagnosis or treatment was done in accordance with the standard of care.
Examples of cancer negligence include:
- Failing to order appropriate diagnostic tests for patient when symptoms indicate the possible presence of cancer;
- Misreading or misinterpreting scans or tests;
- Incorrect or poor treatment, including medication and chemotherapy related problems;
- Failing to inform a patient about available treatment options;
- Delaying, rearranging or canceling appointments for investigations;
- Late diagnosis, delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis.
Healthcare Professionals Duty of Care
All health professionals are bound by law to protect the health of their patients with the degree of skill and diligence required of a reasonably competent practitioner under the same or similar circumstances. This duty of care arises when a doctor-patient relationship is established. In other words, once a medical professional voluntarily agrees to care for a patient, he/she becomes liable for any harm that may affect the patient while discharging his/her professional duty.
When a health professional fails to discharge their duty in accordance with the acceptable standard of care and this results in harm to a patient, they may be held liable for negligence. However, to establish that there was a breach of a medical professional’s duty of care, you will need the support of specialist medical negligence solicitors.
Am I Entitled to a Cancer Negligence Claim?
As noted above, you may be entitled to a claim for cancer negligence if your doctor has breached his/her duty of care towards you. If misdiagnosis or poor treatment of cancer has resulted in injury to you or a loved one, or even the death of a loved one, you may be able to pursue a claim for cancer negligence.
Making Claims Against the NHS for Cancer Negligence
The National Health Service (NHS) usually does a fantastic job of protecting the health of its patients. However, things can and do go wrong. When they do and you decide to pursue a claim for cancer negligence, the NHSLA (NHS Litigation Authority) handles such cases.
In the vast majority of cases, the NHSLA is able to resolve claims out of court. You can claim compensation for the pain and suffering endured, ongoing/future medical care required, inability to perform routine tasks, loss of earnings, home modifications, psychological damage and cost of personal care.
Making Claims for Late/Delayed Cancer Diagnosis
Late or delayed diagnosis of cancer can unnecessarily delay the treatment of the condition. If your doctor missed cancer diagnosis or provide the correct diagnosis at a significantly later time, you can make claims for cancer misdiagnosis if the doctor’s actions has caused you further suffering.
Late or delayed diagnosis means prompt action cannot be taken to treat the patient, and includes incidents where – even if prompt diagnosis was made – the attending health professional failed to promptly refer the patient to the right specialist. It also includes situations where appropriate tests weren’t done or medication wasn’t administered early enough.
If your doctor has misdiagnosed your condition, get in touch with our specialist cancer misdiagnosis solicitors to find out whether there are grounds for cancer misdiagnosis claims. We will also give you an idea on what to expect for how much compensation for misdiagnosis of cancer.
Making Claims for Wrongfully Diagnosed Cancer
On rare occasions, patients are falsely diagnosed with cancer due to a medical professional’s lack of knowledge of cancer symptoms or incompetence. Wrong cancer diagnosis can result in physical and emotional harm long after the incident.
Cancer treatments include radiotherapy and chemotherapy and come with a range of risks and side effects. Unnecessary exposure to radiation therapy can irreversibly affect the health of a patient and means that the right treatment for the patient’s true condition will be delayed or missed. Surgical procedures also come with a number of risks, and can lead to permanent physical and psychological damage.
If you have been falsely diagnosed with cancer, you may be entitled to compensation for the physical, psychological damage you have suffered. You may also receive compensation for the stress and depression endured as a result of the negligent treatment.
Making Claims for Incorrect or Inappropriate Cancer Treatment
If you have been correctly diagnosed but the quality of treatment you receive is poor, the results can be devastating. Whether your treatment is done via surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy or hormonal therapy, your medical professional has a duty to ensure the process is done and managed well. For instance, chemotherapy may sometimes lead to infections or weaken the immune system; if the immune system is weak, doctors must administer the right dosage of immunotherapies to jumpstart the immune system. Surgeries can also expose a patient to the risk of infection, so your health professional must ensure surgical wounds are kept clean and medical devices such as ports and catheters are sterile.
If your healthcare professional fails to apply reasonable level of care during your cancer treatment and this causes you harm, our cancer negligence claims solicitors can help you make a claim.
How to Start a Cancer Negligence Claim
When you contact us, we will arrange for a free, no obligation initial consultation with one of our cancer negligence claims solicitors to discuss details of your case. If we think there are grounds for a cancer negligence claim, our specialist solicitors will help you gather supporting evidence to show there was a breach of duty towards you.
For your claim to be successful, you must show that the standard of care you received was poor and that it has caused you harm. You may not be awarded compensation if your condition did not get worse despite negligent treatment.
The claim for cancer negligence must be filed against the medical professional or NHS body responsible for your care. To make this process as easy and hassle-free as possible, call us for a free confidential consultation to put your claim in motion.
How Much Compensation Can I Claim for Cancer Negligence?
The medical negligence cancer payouts you could claim will depend on:
- the nature and severity of your injury;
- and financial losses incurred as a result.
In building a claim on your behalf, your solicitor will consider the different ways cancer negligence has affected your life. This impact will play a major role in the compensation award you receive. Typically, compensation is made up of two parts: general damages and special damages.
General damages are awarded for the pain, suffering and disability experienced as a result of medical negligence. The Judicial College provides a guidepost as to how compensation for general damages can be calculated.
This compensates for the financial losses incurred as a result of the negligent treatment you suffered. It may include medical expenses, travel expenses (as required by your treatment plan), and care costs.
Time Limits for Making Cancer Negligence Claims
If you have suffered harm as a result of cancer negligence, there is a three-year time limit within which you are to start a claim for compensation. This time limit (or limitation period) generally runs from the date of the negligent treatment. However, the law also recognises that it may not always be possible for a person to know that they have suffered negligence at the time.
For instance, if you have been a victim of delayed cancer diagnosis, the actual negligent treatment occurred at the time the diagnosis was missed. However, you would likely be unaware that cancer was diagnosed too late until the correct diagnosis is made weeks or even months later. In this case, the three-year limitation period will begin to run from your ‘date of knowledge’ – which is the date you became aware or ought to have become aware that your injury was due to negligent treatment.
Other exceptions to the general three-year time limit include:
If a medical professional’s negligence has resulted in the death of your loved one, you may be able to make a claim. In this case, the three-year time limit will only begin to run from the date of death of your loved one.
Cancer is not common in children, but it can happen. If a child has suffered negligent treatment, a Litigation Friend – usually a parent – can make a claim on their behalf. The three-year time limit will only begin when the child turns 18 – a time when they can start the claim on their own if someone has not already done so.
A cancer diagnosis can affect the mental and psychological wellbeing of an individual. So, if a loved one has been a victim of cancer misdiagnosis and has suffered mental disability as a result, such one may be unable to bring a claim on their own, and the three-year time limit does not apply. The law recognises the challenges of mental health issues and, if a person cannot make a claim on their own due to this challenge, the three-year time limit will only begin when the person regains capacity.
In some cases where the person never regains capacity, the time limit will not begin and a claim can be started at any time.
No Win No Fee Cancer Negligence Claims
Our cancer negligence claims solicitors will likely offer to work with you on a No Win No Fee basis. Under this arrangement, you do not experience the added burden of the legal costs associated with a medical negligence claim. Also known as a Conditional Fee Agreement, it can be help mitigate the financial risks of making a claim; you do not have to pay any upfront legal fees to have access to the best legal representation available. If your claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay any fees. If our solicitors are able to help win your case, a success fee will be deducted from your final compensation award.
How We Can Help
You can start a claim for cancer negligence by simply contacting nhsnegligenceclaim.com. We realize that you have endured more than you really should; this is why we aim to make the claims process as easy as possible for you.
We work with a panel of specialist NHS solicitors who will speak to you about your situation, reviewing and advising on whether there is a reasonable chance of success. Our solicitors consider the impact of the alleged negligent treatment on your life, including the physical and mental damage, lost income and future estimated losses, and the cost of care.
With this out of the way, we help you obtain medical evidence required to build your claim; we can make arrangements for an independent medical expert to help with this. We will build a strong and undeniable claim on your behalf and let your healthcare provider know of your intention to bring a claim, including the appropriate compensation for your injury.
Usually, our specialist cancer negligence claims solicitors are able to negotiate an out of court settlement. However, if the alleged negligent party does not accept liability or fails to offer an appropriate compensation amount, we will support you all the way to trial.
Contact us today on 0800 644 4240 to find out how we can help.
Q: When is medical negligence claimed in relation to cancer?
You may be able to make a claim for medical negligence in relation to cancer if your healthcare professional fails to recognise symptoms that may indicate the presence of cancer and this leads to delayed diagnosis and treatment. Delayed diagnosis or treatment of cancer can have a huge impact on the health of a patient, and legal action can be taken to receive appropriate compensation for any injury suffered as a result.
Q: What can cancer negligence compensation cover?
The compensation award for cancer negligence is designed to cover the costs, expenses and damages incurred as a result of the injury you suffered. If you have suffered some form of pain or disability, or you have incurred out of pocket expenses to cover the cost of your care/medical expenses and travel expenses, the compensation you receive can cover these costs. If you have had to quit work or reduce work hours as a result of the injury, you may receive compensation for your loss of earnings.