When we visit the hospital, we expect to receive the right standard of medical attention and treatment for our ailment. Health professionals are obligated by law to care for their patients- this is also known as “Duty of Care”. When a medical professional breaches that duty of care, it can result in very devastating consequences both for the individual and the family.
In the UK, the NHS is doing a wonderful job attending to the needs of millions of people each year and while the majority have received excellent medical attention, it has not been the case of a substantial number of persons who have suffered as a result of medical malpractice.
For instance, in 2018/19, there was an average of 29 compensation claims brought against the NHS every day amounting to 10,678 claims that year. In the same year, 11,625 claims were closed and 6,943 claims were successful.
Therefore, if you have suffered hospital negligence either in the NHS or a private hospital, then you may have a claim for medical malpractice.
What Is Medical Malpractice Negligence?
Medical negligence or medical malpractice describes acts of negligence, substandard care, actions or inactions by medical professionals towards their patients which causes them pain, harm, psychological trauma or even death.
The effects of medical negligence can be very challenging for the patient; some have been left with debilitating disabilities requiring them to quit work, suffer financial losses and needing round-the-clock care.
Hospital Negligence Claims
Hospital negligence claims refers to when an individual sues for medical malpractice against a hospital or a particular NHS Trust for negligence which has caused the individual harm, trauma or avoidable complications.
If mistakes were made during your treatment or visit to your doctor, such as delayed diagnosis, incorrect diagnosis, mistakes in drug prescription or surgical errors that have led to complications, avoidable pain or unnecessary injury, then you may be entitled to a hospital negligence claim.
We have specialist medical negligence solicitors who have the expertise in hospital negligence claims and have helped many clients over the years secure hugely satisfying settlement payouts. We are available to assist you determine if you have a valid claim and make a hospital negligence claim for you to get you the right amount of compensation which will be very vital for your recovery.
Examples Of Hospital Negligence
Hospital negligence can come in various forms and the following are acts of negligent treatment in a hospital that can cause harm to the patient.
- Errors in drug prescription such as prescribing the wrong drug or prescribing an incorrect dosage
- Incorrect diagnosis
- Failure to diagnose and treat
- Wrong hospital treatment
- Errors in the operating room such as unnecessary and avoidable injury to internal organs, operating on the wrong body site or forgetting surgical instrument inside the patient
- Childbirth negligence leading to complications to mother and/or child
- Anaesthesia errors
- A failure or delay in referring a patient to a specialist
- Unnecessary delays in carry out vital diagnostic tests
- Negligent delay in commencing treatment
- Pressure sores developing because of leaving a patient unattended to in one position for a long time
- Avoidable amputation
- Failing to properly monitor patient vitals which can lead to further complications
- Hospital-transmitted infections such as
- Bacterial infections e.g. MRSA and Clostridium difficile
- Viral infections e.g. norovirus
- Surgical wounds infection
- Urinary tract infections
- Infections to the skin and soft tissues
Hospital negligence cases are not limited to these mentioned. If you or your loved one has suffered any of these forms of medical negligence or others similar to these, resulting in complications, trauma or death of a loved one, then you may have strong grounds to make a claim. We are right here, we will stand by you and will do our very best to help you get justice for the wrong done to you.
Hospital Negligence Claims We Handle
Our hospital negligence claims solicitors have the expertise to handle the following hospital negligence claims;
- Cancer Misdiagnosis claims
- Accident & Emergency claims
- Amputee claims
- Anaesthetic compensation claims
- Birth injury claims
- Surgical claims
- Care home neglect claims
- NHS negligence claims
- ENT negligence claims
- Doctor negligence claims
- Cosmetic surgery claims
If you’re not sure if you have strong grounds to make a hospital negligence claim, then you should come to us for a free assessment of your claim where our friendly and understanding team of hospital negligence solicitors will determine if you have a valid claim. We will also give you free claims legal advice on what to do and how to proceed with your claim. Our consultation sessions do not cost you a penny.
Why Should I Sue A Hospital For Negligence?
There are various reasons why you should sue a hospital for medical negligence-
Suing a hospital for medical negligence is your legal right if you have suffered from negligent treatment from your GP, Specialist doctor or any other medical professional.
Making claims will ensure that the hospital you have made claims against whether a private establishment or the NHS takes proper measures to curb the recurrence of the negligent act. Most often we have found out that hospitals only make necessary changes when claims are made against them.
Another reason why you should make claims is to receive compensation for your pain and trauma. It is true that compensation will not reverse the incident but it will go a long way to quicken your recovery. It will also ensure that you do not suffer financially as a result of your situation. Compensation amounts you receive will also help you access further medical assistance vital for your recovery.
Therefore, do not put off a chance to get justice for your suffering.
How To Prove Hospital Negligence?
Before you may think of how to file a lawsuit against a hospital, you need to be prepared to prove your claims. In other words, you should be prepared to show that indeed you suffered from hospital negligence and that is the cause of your present suffering and complications.
You should be prepared to establish that;
- The hospital was responsible to care for you (owed you a duty of care)
- The hospital failed in their duty of care to you
- The hospital’s failure in their duty of care to you has caused you pain, emotional distress, injury or complication
- You have also suffered financial losses and other damages as a result
There will be certain documents your hospital negligence solicitor will require from you to help you prove your claim. We can also help you gain access to these documents or write to relevant authorities on your behalf if you are unable to get them by yourself. These documents are;
- Comprehensive statements of the events that transpired, dates of medical appointments, treatment you underwent, what type of negligence you suffered and the hospital staff involved
- Medical records, test and scan results
- Witness statements
- Evidence of financial losses incurred
Your solicitor will also most likely secure for you a specialist independent medical expert, who after performing further medical examination on you will make a report on your state of health. This report is vital towards negotiating an appropriate compensation fee.
How To Sue A Hospital For Negligence?
Our team of expert hospital negligence solicitors have an enviable record of representing many persons who have been victims of hospital negligence for several years and securing best possible compensation amounts for them. The process of suing a hospital for medical negligence is basically the same for whatever type of claims you want to make against a hospital.
For instance, you may wish to know how to sue a hospital for wrongful death where you have lost your loved one to the cold hands of death due to doctor’s negligence.
You may also want to make a lawsuit against a hospital for misdiagnosis or make a claim for wrongful discharge from the hospital.
The general claims process involves the following;
- Contacting Your Medical Negligence Solicitor– for free legal advice and assessment of your claim
- Funding Your Claim- after it has been determined that you have a valid negligence claim
- Gathering Facts and Evidence– that will be used to prove your claim
- Proving Your Claim (Establishing Liability) –this will involve both written and verbal communications with the defendant.
- Negotiations between both- both parties will have to agree on several vital issues and if they are unable to do so, the claim will be registered to be tired by a judge
- Payment of Compensation Fee- when both parties reach an agreement, the compensation fee will be paid
Most medical negligence cases do not however get to a court trial. Our negligence solicitors have a record of settling claims out of court and quickly too. Only 0.6% of all claims against the NHS in 2019/20 went to court.
How To Sue A Hospital Without A Lawyer?
From a legal perspective, it is very possible to file a lawsuit against a hospital for medical negligence without a lawyer but before making that decision there are vital aspects of a case you must consider. Medical negligence lawsuits are quite complex and so as the plaintiff, you must be ready to defend both the medical and legal aspects of the case.
Moreover, the defendant will be represented by expert lawyers who are well versed in law unlike you who may not have an in-depth knowledge and they will certainly make it near impossible for you to prove a claim which is a clear case of medical negligence such as a case of “never event”.
If you choose to file a file a lawsuit against a hospital without a lawyer, you must be prepared to do the following;
- File motions
- Gather evidence
- Bring witnesses and cross examine them
- Meet court deadlines
You should be prepared to make an opening statement, prepare your questions and know how to conduct yourself in the presence of a judge and the jury when the actual trial begins. This will no doubt affect you both physically and mentally especially as you are still suffering the effects of the negligent treatment from your doctor or other health professional. When you consider all this, you will realize that you need an expert hospital negligence lawyer to represent you and it costs you nothing to get one.
How Much Compensation For Hospital Negligence?
There are different compensation values for different hospital negligence cases. For instance, if you are suing the NHS for emotional distress, you will not receive the same compensation figure for a wrongful death claim. Even two persons who sue for emotional distress will not get the same settlement amount because the severity of emotional distress, other financial losses as well as future prognosis will differ and these factors among others will affect the amount an individual will get as compensation award.
There are two main kinds of damages you can claim for while making your hospital negligence claim;
General Damages: which takes into account the type of injury suffered, location and severity of injury as determined by the Judicial College Guidelines.
Special Damages: which varies from one individual to another and covers for financial losses such as loss of income, pension, out-of-pocket expenses, future prognosis, costs of further medical treatment, therapies, costs of assistive devices or mobility aids as well as housing adjustments where applicable.
How Long To Sue For Medical Negligence?
You have a maximum of three years according to the Limitation Act of 1980 to make a claim. This time frame begins from the date of the negligent treatment or the date you became aware of it. In a case where the victim of the negligent treatment is dead, this time limit begins to count from the date of death.
- Children under 18years of age who will be allowed until their 21st birthday and physically or mentally incapacitated victims who will be allowed enough time until they are able to make claims are exempted from the Limitation Act.
A loved one can however make claims on behalf of these sets of people rather than wait until they are able to make claims by themselves. This is advisable as medical negligence claims are much better to be made when facts or events can easily be recalled and relevant documents easily assessed.
We are here to help and guide you to make claims for your loved one if you have concerns about this.
Suing a Hospital with No Win No Fee
Our medical negligence solicitors at Medical Negligence Direct, will undertake your hospital negligence claims under our No Win No Fee policy legally known as Conditional Fee Agreement. This policy allows you to make claims against any private hospital or the NHS without having to make any payments upfront. You do not have to pay us any legal fees before the commencement or during the proceedings of your claims. Actually, you don’t even have to pay us a penny if your claim is not successful.
On the other hand, when your claims are successful, we will take out 25% of your compensation award as success fee while you receive the rest.
You can reach out to us today on 0800 644 4240 or fill out our online claims assessment form and our solicitors will be happy to discuss your claims at your earliest convenience.