A guide to Clinical Negligence

Your guide to clinical negligence

What is a clinical negligence claim?

If you have suffered injury or a family member has died at the hands of a medical practitioner e.g a doctor, nurse, consultant, surgeon, dentist pharmacist , as a result of sub standard treatment then you may be entitled to claim against that person or hospital.

What kind of Injuries are involved in a clinical negligence claim?

Claims can vary from minor cases to those of the maximum severity, involving sever disability or death. No matter what the level injury, most people affected by clinical negligence feel let down by their medical practitioner. This is understandable. You place your trust in their hands and expect adequate treatment. Vincents clinical negligence team have dealt with many different type of cases, including:

  • cancer misdiagnosis
  • negligent surgery
  • vascular compromise / amputation
  • cerebral palsy
  • birth injury
  • Spinal Injuries
  • Brain and Head injuries
  • Fractures misdiagnosis
  • Fatal Accidents
  • Gynealogocal and urological injuries
  • Nerve damage
  • Cosmetic Surgery errors

If a family member has died as a result of inadequate treatment is it possible to claim and who brings the case?

If a person dies through negligent treatment then a claim can be brought on behalf of the deceased.

If a person dies leaving a will then a claim can be brought by the executors on behalf of the deceased estate. This can include:

  • compensation for pain and suffering which may have been experienced by the deceased prior to death
  • funeral expenses
  • a bereavement award in certain circumstances
  • a dependancy claim for surviving spouse and children

If a person dies without a will then an application can be made to court to appoint a Personal representative to grant letters of administration. The Personal Representative can then bring the claim on behalf of the estate.

What is meant by substandard treatment and how do I prove this?

The law defines this as treatment that falls below the standard expected from a medic, specialising in that particular area of medicine or dentistry. Complications can occur in any medical procedure or treatment, however whilst some are recognised complications, others are not. It is these types of errors that result in negligence claims.

At Vincents we use leading medical experts who will provide their medical opinion as to whether you have been a victim of sub standard treatment. Their report will not be disclosed to anyone without your permission.

What can I claim for?

Claims can include:

  • Compensation for pain
  • Loss of earnings
  • Care from family and friends
  • New Accommodation
  • Medical Aids and Equipment
  • Adapted cars
  • Professional Care fees
  • PrIvate physiotherapy and treatment
  • Rehabilitation
  • Funeral Expenses
  • Bereavements
  • Dependancy claims for remaining spouses or children

Will any ongoing treatment be affected if I complain?

Quite simply - NO! No medical expert should treat you any differently or alter your treatment plan simply because you allege negligence. Its our job at Vincents to ensure this doesn't happen.

However, if you lack faith in your doctor we will assist you to seek alternative medical opinion.

If I complain will the hospital or doctor apologise to me?

Unfortunately, apologies are not always made where there has been negligence. Its our job to try and obtain an apology from the person responsible or the organisation concerned.

If I complain, will the doctor be disciplined?

Sometimes but not always. This will often depend on the level of negligence and error. We will advise you on this aspect, which runs separately from any case that you bring.

Does it take long to get my case to Court?

Our aim at Vincents is to avoid you having to go to court! However, clinical negligence claims can take many years to complete. In certain cases, we aim to resolve straightforward cases in around a year. However, the majority take far longer.

I’m worried about the cost?

Our mission is to ensure that you don't have to pay any costs in the event that you are successful. We will recover our costs from the defendant.

To protect you against any cost liability in the event that you should lose your case, will recommend an insurance policy. We will talk you through this at the start of your claim.

You wont have any upfront costs.

Vincents’ clinical negligence team have collectively over 30 years of clinical negligence experience, dealing with a vast array of clinical negligence work. We will treat you with empathy and understanding. We promise to talk to you in terms that you will understand and avoid the legal jargon
Empathy, understanding and confidentiality is at the heart of everything with do.

Please contact our team on 0800 310 2000 today for any further free initial advice or information, we will be pleased to help.