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UK Medical Negligence Claims

In the UK, medical negligence claims enable you to recover compensation when you or somebody close to you have suffered a loss, an injury or the deterioration of an existing condition due to the negligence of a medical practitioner. For medical negligence claims in the UK to be successful, it has to be established that the medical practitioner failed to provide the best course of action “in the circumstances and at the time” and that you sustained an injury as a result. Should you have any questions about whether you qualify to make medical negligence claims in the UK, you are invited to call our freephone helpline and discuss the circumstances of your injury directly with an experienced medical negligence claims solicitor.

Judge Highlights Lack of Informed Consent in Claim for Negligent Laser Eye Surgery

October 3, 2014

A judge at the Central London County Court has awarded a woman £567,287 in settlement of her claim for negligent laser eye surgery after finding that there was a lack of informed consent.

Stephanie Holloway (28) from Gosport in Hampshire brought her claim for negligent laser eye surgery after undergoing a procedure to improve her short-sightedness compensation at the Southampton branch of Optical Express in September 2008.

Stephanie had hoped that laser eye surgery would improve chances of being accepted for the police force, but the procedure left Stephanie suffering from photophobia – an intolerance of bright lights – and she now has to wear sunglasses permanently when she goes out of her candle-lit home.

Stephanie also developed depression and a fear of going blind after the failed procedure and despite subsequent consultations with optical experts her condition has not improved. After seeking legal advice, she made a claim for negligent laser eye surgery against Optical Express and the surgeon who conducted her procedure – Dr Joanna McGraw.

In her claim for negligent laser eye surgery, Stephanie alleged that she had not been advised of the potential risks of the procedure – an allegation refuted by Optical Express and Dr McGraw, who insisted that Stephanie had been advised hers was a very difficult case which could have a negative result.

At the Central London County Court, Judge Edward Bailey heard that Dr McGraw´s first consultation with Stephanie had lasted only three to four minutes, and that Stephanie had been pressed to sign a consent form just seven minutes before the procedure to correct her short-sightedness commenced.

The judge said that giving a patient a consent form to sign seven minutes before a procedure “is not how things should be done”, and he ruled that Stephanie had been given insufficient information about the risks attached to the procedure for her to give her informed consent.

Judge Bailey added that the lack of information Stephanie received was “a material breach in Optical Express´s duty of care” and that being pressed to sign a consent form immediately before a procedure went against the Royal College of Ophthalmologist´s guidelines that a patient should be given a consent form at least twenty-four hours in advance.

Stephanie was awarded £569,287 compensation by the judge in settlement of her claim for negligent eye surgery – which included more than £400,000 to account for Stephanie´s loss of earnings after her book dealing business collapsed due to her being unable to read small print.

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Magistrates Fine Nursing Home for Scalding Injury which Leads to Resident´s Death

September 30, 2014

Magistrates have fined a Flintshire nursing home for a scalding injury which led to resident dying from her burns.

The Greencroft Nursing Home in Queensferry, Flintshire, was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after Beatrice Morgan (88) died from complications following a burn injury while being lowered by a hoist into a bath.

The initial injury occurred in August 2012 when Beatrice – who had worked as a matron at the Wrexham Maelor Hospital before her retirement – was being lowered into the bath. As she touched the water, she screamed in pain, and was quickly removed from the bath and taken to the nearby Whiston Burns Unit suffering from 9 percent burns.

Beatrice developed pneumonia and a blood clot in her lungs while she was at the Whiston Hospital, and died one month later. The HSE launched an investigation into the nursing home scalding injury and discovered that the temperature of the hot water was not properly controlled to prevent it exceeding the maximum safe level of 44º Celsius.

They also found that no risk assessment had been carried out for the bathing of the residents and there had been little staff training. A subsequent inspection by the Care and Social Services Inspectorate for Wales raised serious concerns about the safety of the nursing home’s 26 residents – including poor staffing levels and training – and applied to the courts for the home´s immediate closure.

The company responsible for running the nursing home – Greencroft Care Ltd – has now gone into liquidation, and its directors failed to appear at the Flintshire Magistrates Court to defend the charge against them. In their absence the company was found liable for the nursing home scalding injury and fined £5,000.

District Judge Gwyn Jones acknowledged that the fine was unlikely to ever be paid – as the company was no longer trading and had no assets – and that had the nursing home still been trading, he would have referred the case to the Crown Court where the fine would have been much higher.

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Value of Claim for Bed Sores Compensation still to be Determined

September 26, 2014

The value of a successful claim for bed sores compensation is still to be determined after the judge presiding over the case allowed more time for calculations to be completed.

In 2008, sixty-one years old Christine Reaney from Burntwood in Staffordshire developed myelitis – a rare spinal cord condition which paralysed Christine from the chest down. Subsequently she underwent long spells of treatment at three Staffordshire hospitals – the Cannock Chase Hospital, the Stafford Hospital and the North Staffordshire Royal Infirmary.

During extended stays in the three hospitals between December 2008 and October 2009, Christine developed severe bed sores. Despite being first identified in January 2009, the bed sores developed into a serious condition which caused Christine to sustain a bone marrow infection and damage to her leg muscle tissues which caused a dislocated hip.

Christine sought legal advice, and made a claim for bed sores compensation against the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust and the University Hospital of North Staffordshire NHS Trust – the two Trusts responsible for managing care at the three hospitals.

In her claim for bed sores compensation, Christine claimed that staff and failed to take appropriate measures when the sores were first identified and that her subsequent injuries were due to a failure in care. Following an investigation into the allegations, the two NHS Trusts acknowledge their responsibility for allowing the bed sores to develop into a serious condition and issued an apology.

However, there was a breakdown in negotiations over how much compensation for bed sores Christine was entitled to, and the case was subsequently heard by Mr Justice Foskett at the High Court in London. At the hearing Mr Justice Foskett was told that Christine was expected to live into her 80s despite her paralysing condition, and would need round-the-clock care for the rest of her life.

Judge Foskett adjourned the hearing for calculations to be completed on Christine´s future care requirements but, speaking after the case, Christine´s solicitors estimated that the final settlement of her claim for bed sores compensation could be between £2 million and £3 million.

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Deep Vein Thrombosis Compensation Claim Settled at Court Hearing

September 16, 2014

A deep vein thrombosis compensation claim has been settled at the start of a court hearing after an NHS Trust admitted failings in the claimant´s care.

The claim for deep vein thrombosis compensation was made by an unnamed woman from Belfast following the delivery of her first child at the Ulster Hospital in June 2009. The woman had given birth to her first child at the age of thirty-five and subsequently developed the symptoms of deep vein thrombosis.

When she attended the hospital´s A&E Department, the woman was told that the swelling and tenderness in her leg was due to hormone activity, but – after the births of two further children – she had to undergo surgery for the condition.

The woman now wears support tights permanently, has difficulty ascending stairs and is exhausted if she walks for longer than fifteen minutes. She is also fearful that if a blood clot develops in her leg due to deep vein thrombosis, she may have to have the leg amputated.

After obtaining legal advice, the woman made a deep vein thrombosis compensation claim against the NHS Trust responsible for managing the Ulster Hospital – South Eastern Care and Social Health Trust. In her claim she alleged that – despite her age placing her in the high-risk category – she was not assessed as being at risk of deep vein thrombosis.

She also alleged that, if she had been properly assessed, doctors at the hospital would have prescribed medication to prevent the condition from developing.

The South Eastern Care and Social Health Trust acknowledged the failings in her care – but only as a hearing to determine negligence was about to get underway at the Crown Court in Belfast. The NHS Trust subsequently agreed to a settlement of her deep vein thrombosis compensation claim amounting to £400,000 and publicly apologised to her.

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Man Settles Claim for Blood Cancer due to Hospital Error

May 6, 2014

A Wirral man has settled his claim for blood cancer due to a hospital error at the Royal Liverpool Hospital, where he was given a kidney transplant infected with lymphoma.

Robert Law (62) from New Ferry on the Wirral developed blood cancer after undergoing a kidney transplant operation at the Royal Liverpool Hospital in 2010. Although the kidney he received had been screened for diseases, the donor was found to be suffering from lymphoma six days later during a post-mortem.

Robert was informed of the situation quickly, but due to his body still recovering from the initial surgery, his immune system collapsed and Robert became ill very quickly. Robert underwent chemotherapy which made him feel “very rough and sick”, but a subsequent biopsy revealed that the cancer had gone into remission.

After seeking legal advice, Robert made a claim for blood cancer due to a hospital error and, in 2012, the NHS Blood and Transplant Unit admitted liability for his illness and issued an apology. A six-figure settlement of compensation was agreed to cover the injury that Robert had sustained and the psychological trauma he had experienced on being told of the error and throughout his treatment.

Lynda Hamlyn, Chief Executive of NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “I would like to reiterate to Mr Law how sorry we are that this mistake was made. I hope the full and final settlement of his case means he can move on from what unfortunately happened. I would also like to reassure Mr Law we have learnt lessons and have made a number of changes as a direct result of this case”.

A second recipient of an infected kidney – Gillian Smart (52) from St Helens in Merseyside – is still negotiating a settlement of her claim for blood cancer due to a hospital error.

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Nerve Damage at Birth Compensation Claim Resolved Out of Court

April 24, 2014

A man, who suffered permanent paralysis to his arm when he was born in 1991, has settled his nerve damage at birth compensation claim for £450,000.

Jamie Lewis from Caerphilly in South Wales was born in 1991 at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport and, during his delivery, he became trapped in the birth canal. Doctors trying to free him from the canal used excessive force in the circumstances, and Jamie was born with nerve damage similar to Erb´s Palsy.

It was hoped that as Jamie was growing up the nerve damage would heal itself; but Jamie´s left arm was paralysed and he was later diagnosed with a permanent disability. His disability prevented him from activities such as cycling and he became a target for bullies – which in turn hindered his social development.

Jamie´s mother – Cheryl – started a compensation claim for nerve damage at birth on her son´s behalf against her local health board; but the solicitor she approached declined to accept the case and Cheryl ultimately dropped her action.

Several years later, the family was encouraged to make a fresh nerve damage at birth compensation claim and, when Jamie (now twenty-three years of age) was eighteen years old and of legal age to represent himself, he sought legal advice and this time found a solicitor who felt he had a viable claim.

The solicitor assisted Jamie with the compensation claim for nerve damage at birth and successfully argued against the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board that when Jamie was born, his mother´s doctors had negligently failed to follow the right procedures to release him from the birth canal.

Eventually the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board accepted liability for Jamie´s injuries, and an out of court settlement of compensation for nerve damage at birth was negotiated which will see Jamie receive £450,000.

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Widow to Receive Compensation for Hospitals Failure to Diagnose Heart Attack

December 6, 2013

A Cambridge woman will receive £100,000 compensation for a hospital´s failure to diagnose a heart attack which led to the death of her husband in 2009.

Ian Jardine (58) died at the family home in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, one week after attending the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kings Lynn on 12th June 2009, complaining of a shortness of breath and a crushing pain in his chest. He was told that the pain was musculoskeletal in origin and was causing his shortness of breath, and that if the symptoms continued he should attend the hospital´s chest clinic.

Twice in the following week, Ian visited his GP´s surgery – on the second occasion “anxious” and “in considerable pain”. When he returned home from the surgery on 19th June 2009, his wife – Sharon – summoned an ambulance. Ian  declined to return to the hospital and died later that evening from a coronary thrombosis.

Sharon Jardine sought legal advice, and made a claim for compensation for the hospitals failure to diagnose a heart attack against the Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Foundation Trust and the East Midlands Ambulance Services NHS Trust. in April this year, after a four-year legal battle, the NHS Trusts admitted that a correct diagnosis of Ian´s condition would have saved his life.

Following the admission of liability, Sharon will receive £100,000 compensation for the hospitals failure to diagnose a heart attack in an out-of-court settlement. Sharon has also received an apology from both the  Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Foundation Trust and the East Midlands Ambulance Services NHS Trust, apologising for the shortcomings in Ian´s care.

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Claim for Brain Injury at Birth Resolved after Court Hearing

September 24, 2013

A young girl´s claim for a brain injury at birth which led her to sustain athetoid cerebral palsy has been resolved after a court hearing.

Ruby Curtis (now eight years old) was born at St James Hospital in Leeds on 28th August 2005 after having been deprived of oxygen prior to her delivery when medical staff administered drugs to bring on her mother´s contractions and failed to notice that her mother´s uterus had ruptured.

Ruby´s delivery was subsequently delayed and she was born suffering from athetoid cerebral palsy – a type of cerebral palsy which shows as involuntary muscle movements in her head and body and all four of her limbs. Ruby is unable to speak and communicates through eye movements.

Ruby´s mother – Lisa Curtis from Garforth in West Yorkshire – gave up work after Ruby´s birth as she requires full-time assistance in every element of daily life; from eating and drinking to personal care and education. Now that she is a little older, Ruby attends the Percy Hedley School for children with cerebral palsy near Newcastle.

Through her parents, Ruby made a claim for a brain injury at birth and, after the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust admitted their “majority” liability for Ruby´s birth injuries, a compensation settlement was negotiated that will see Ruby receive a £2.95 million lump sum now with future payments of compensation for a brain injury at birth paid annually.

At the Leeds High Court, Judge Mark Gosnell heard an apology read out by a representative of the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust to the family which the judge hoped would give the Ruby´s parents some “sense of closure”.

Approving the settlement of compensation for a brain injury at birth, the judge noted that the funds would be paid into and administered by the Court of Protection, adding that now the claim for brain injury at birth was resolved the compensation should secure “a better family life for both you and Ruby”.

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Family Resolve Claim for Hospital Misdiagnosis of Lung Cancer

April 29, 2013

A family has resolved their claim for hospital misdiagnosis of lung cancer against the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust due to an undisclosed out-of-court settlement.

The family of Frank Golby from Whoberley in Coventry made their claim for hospital misdiagnosis of lung cancer following Frank´s death in Coventry University Hospital – one day after he had been correctly diagnosed with lung cancer, and almost twenty-one months after doctors had the hospital had overlooked a 1cm growth on Frank´s lung and told him he had a chest infection.

Frank had originally attended Coventry University Hospital in May 2010 after having been referred there by his GP for a persistent cough he was suffering. Despite returning several times complaining of anaemia and breathing problems, doctors at the hospital never reviewed the original scan, and it was only when Frank had a chest x-ray on February 17 2012 that the true identity of his illness became known.

Frank´s death prompted his family to seek legal advice and they made a claim for hospital misdiagnosis of lung cancer against the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust – alleging that if doctors at Coventry University Hospital had correctly identified a tumour in 2010, Frank´s condition could have been treated and he would still be with his family today.

After a review of the circumstances that led to Frank´s misdiagnosis, the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust acknowledged their error, admitted liability for Frank´s premature death and issued an apology to his family. An undisclosed five-figure settlement was agreed between solicitors representing the hospital and the family in respect of the claim for hospital misdiagnosis of lung cancer.

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Brain Injury Claim made against the NHS Resolved Out of Court

March 23, 2013

A thirteen-year-old boy´s brain injury claim made against the NHS has been resolved out of court with the young child due to receive £7.3 million in compensation.

The parents of Robbie Crane from Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire made the brain injury claim against the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trust after their son suffered brain damage following an operation to reverse a congenital heart problem Robbie had been born with several days earlier.

Although the complicated surgery to transpose the great arteries was successful, Robbie suffered brain damage while recovering from the operation at the Harefield Hospital in Hertfordshire because a ventilator keeping him alive had not been adjusted properly.

Robbie´s brain damage injury resulted in cerebral palsy, learning difficulties, behavioural problems and epilepsy. Consequently Robbie needs constant intense supervision and will never be able to lead an independent life due to having no sense of danger.

The Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trust – against whom the brain injury claim against the NHS was made – denied liability for Robbie´s injuries, but made an out of court offer of compensation based on 70 percent of what the court assessed Robbie required to provide care for the rest of his life.

Although the brain injury claim against the NHS was made by Robbie´s parents and the offer of settlement was made out of court, the award still had to be approved by a judge as Robbie is under the age of eighteen.

After hearing the circumstances of the case and the NHS Trust´s legal representative acknowledge that “things could have been done differently and better”, Mr Justice Tugendhat approved the settlement agreement at the High Court in London – paying tribute to Robbie´s parents for the devotion they had given their son.

Under the terms of the out of court settlement, Robbie will receive a substantial lump sum immediately as well as annual, index-linked and tax-free payments to cover the costs of his care for as long as he lives. With his anticipated life expectancy, the total settlement of his brain injury claim made against the NHS is valued at £7.3 million.

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NHS Medical Negligence Settlements Raise Concerns

January 14, 2013

The Chief Executive of the Medical Defence Union has raised fears that NHS medical negligence settlements of compensation claims are out of control and becoming unmanageable.

As she was speaking on the BBC’s “Today” program, Christine Tomkins said that the value of claims being made against the NHS being currently settled is increasing quicker than society´s ability to pay for them. “Money is pouring out of the NHS to set up one-patient institutions” she remarked “when it could be retained in the NHS.”

Ms Tomkins stated that legislation first drawn up in 1948 – the Law Reform (Personal Injuries) Act – does not acknowledge care provision available from the NHS for those who contract a serious injury and settlements of medical negligence claims against the NHS are therefore calculated with reference on how expensive it would be to provide care for the injured individual privately.

On the BBC program, she referred to the case of Charlie Scott, who was diagnosed with spastic quadriplegic hemiplegic atheloid cerebral palsy after sustaining brain damage at birth, and whose mother was successful recently in a 14-year battle in the courts against the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Trust.

The medical negligence compensation settlement of £7.1 million, Ms Tomkins claimed, would be far less if the individuals calculating the value of compensation in NHS negligence claims could factor in their calculations the care available on the NHS. As per Ms Tomkins, the NHS Litigation Authority has periodic payment liabilities of £18bn – an amount sufficient to pay the annual running costs of a dozen large teaching hospitals.

Charlie Scott’s mother, Clare, was also invited to appear on the radio broadcast. Ms Scott acknowledged that some of the care and facilities from which Charlie will now benefit could be made available by the NHS, but told presenter Justin Webb that Charlie will no longer have to wait for social services assessments before being given the care he needs. Mrs Scott continued to say that the size and structure of the settlement allows the security of 24-hour care for her son when she, or the NHS, would be unable to provide it for him.

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Gynaecological Medical Negligence Compensation after Unapproved Termination

December 13, 2012

A woman, who was found to be fourteen weeks pregnant during a hysterectomy procedure, has successfully made a claim for gynaecological medical negligence compensation after unapproved termination against the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

The woman who is to remain anonymous, had the hysterectomy procedure in November 2007, during which it was found that she had been pregnant for fourteen weeks pregnant. The procedure had been permitted to continue despite the consultant gynaecologist noticing that her (the patient’s) uterus was “abnormally large” but, by the time the unborn child had been discovered, the woman´s cervix had been taken out and a continuation of the pregnancy was no longer possible.

The woman made her claim for gynaecological medical negligence after unapproved termination compensation on the grounds that the avoidable termination of the foetus stopped her and her partner from having the son they longed for and, although she had suffered no physical injury due to the serious mistake, both she and her partner had suffered a major emotional trauma when the consultant´s negligence had been admitted claimed that, had she known she was pregnant at the time of the hysterectomy procedure, she would not have gone ahead with the surgical operation.

Following an investigation into the incident, the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust accepted that an “inadvertent termination” had happened and acknowledged their liability in the patient´s gynaecological medical negligence compensation claim. After talks with the woman´s solicitors, an out-of-court medical negligence settlement of £62.000 in gynaecological negligence compensation was agreed upon.

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Deadly Drug Blunder Led to Patient’s Death

July 4, 2012

The family of Albert Matthews, 65, formerly of Broseley in Shropshire, have agreed a 15,000 pounds hospital injury compensation settlement with the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals NHS Trust, after they admitted medical negligence which led to Mr. Matthews’ death.

Mr Matthews had been brought to the Princess Royal Hospital in Telford in September 2006, complaining of a shortness of breath. He thought to have pneumonia in his upper lung, hospitalised and given Tramadol and Haloperidol.

His condition continued to deteriorate, and several days later he was administered with 4mg of the painkilling drug Lorazepam. The cocktail of painkillers and sedatives sent Mr Matthews into respiratory arrest, which lead to cardiac arrest and he died the next day.

In the compensation case against the hospital, it was claimed that these three drugs were known to affect breathing when administered together, and that Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals NHS Trust had failed in their duty of care towards Mr. Matthews.

The Trust initially denied the claim – stating that appropriate medical treatment had been given – but have now accepted that the combination of drugs did lead to Mr. Matthews’ premature death and have apologised to the family as well as agreeing to a compensation payment of 15,000 pounds.

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Compensation Award of 17,300 Pounds at Clinical Malpractice Hearing

November 26, 2011

A Devon man has been awarded a total of 17,300 Pounds in clinical malpractice compensation after the unauthorised accessing of his medical records lead to the exacerbation of his paranoid personality disorder.

Judge Cotter QC, sitting at the Plymouth County Court, was told how the medical records of Sean Robert Grinyer of Plymouth, Devon, had been access and disclosed by Mr Grinyer´s ex-partner who was, at the time of the offence in December 2007, employed at the hospital as a nurse.

This unauthorised access and disclosure was claimed by Mr Grinyer´s legal counsel to be in violation of S.13 of the Data Protection Act 1988 and the action by the claimant´s partner, plus an alleged mis-handling of his subsequent complaint, had caused Mr Grinyer´s pre-existing paranoid personality disorder to worsen. It was also claimed in the legal action against Plymouth Hospital NHS Trust that the deterioration in his condition had also caused Mr Grinyer to reject an offer of temporary employment.

After hearing expert medical opinion in respect of Mr Grinyer’s paranoid personality disorder, Judge Cotter QC ruled that the exacerbation of his condition did constitute an injury and was due to negligence on behalf of the Plymouth Hospital NHS Trust. The judge awarded Mr Grinyer 12,500 Pounds in clinical malpractice compensation for the injuries he had sustained plus another 4,800 Pounds for loss of earnings when unable to accept the offer of employment.

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Medical Negligence Claims Action Settled for Misdiagnosed Spinal Injury

November 12, 2011

A 25 year old man, whose schoolboy spinal injury was overlooked eleven years ago – leading to years of pain and difficulty with walking – has settled his hospital negligence claims action with the Tameside Hospital in Manchester in an undisclosed out-of-court settlement.  

Liam Careless of Stalybridge, Manchester, was just twelve years of age when he visited the Accident and Emergency department of the Tameside Hospital complaining of feelings of paralysis on his neck. Liam was x-rayed, detained overnight and discharged from hospital the following day with a neck collar for support.

However, after four years of complaining of shooting pains in his neck, a further x-ray showed that the serious damage to Liam´s spine had been overlooked – damage which could have been resolved with prompt surgery at the time of his original complaint.

Now faced with a lifetime of pain, a weak neck and walking difficulty, Liam sought legal advice and brought a hospital negligence claim against the Tameside Hospital. The Tameside Hospital stated that they were liable for the error and offered Liam a six figure sum in compensation to provide ongoing care.

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Medical Negligence Compensation for Heart Surgery Error

October 25, 2011

A man, who was woken during surgery to tell him that his heart operation had gone wrong, has received a six-figure sum in compensation after taking a medical negligence compensation claim.

Steve Edwards (51) from Weston-Super-Mare, North Somerset, was having a minor heart procedure at the Bristol Royal Infirmary in 2008 when the mistake happened occurred. While he was undergoing surgery, an item of equipment slipped, causing a radio pulse to be applied to the wrong side of his heart.

The error meant that Mr Edwards would require a pacemaker to be fitted, and while heavily anaesthetised he was brought around to advise him of the treatment he required. Mr Edwards claimed in his case against the Bristol Royal Infirmary that he did not appreciate the severity of the issue at the time, and it was only in an outpatient’s appointment ten weeks later that the full extent of the error became known.

Despite three moreattempts at corrective surgery, Mr Edwards will now have to wear the pacemaker for the rest of his life – meaning that he will have to undergo surgery once every seven years to replace the battery. The Bristol Royal Infirmary admitted medical negligence and agreed a six-figure sum in medical compensation with Mr Edwards´ legal representatives in an out-of-court settlement.

In a released statement, the Bristol Royal Infirmary stated “Technical errors during Mr Edwards’ cardiac ablation procedure resulted in the catheter moving and radio frequency energy being delivered to the wrong side of his heart. Further checks have been introduced to ensure that the catheter is perfectly placed before radio frequency energy is delivered.”

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DePuy Sued by Former “Poster Girl”

October 20, 2011

A former gymnast, who worked promoting the DePuy ASR Hip Replacement System prior to the product´s worldwide recall last year, is making a personal injury compensation claim against the product´s manufacturers Johnson & Johnson following difficulties with her own DePuy hip replacement system.

Penny Brown, 51 years old, of Bath, Wiltshire, had hip replacement surgery in 2004 to relieve her from the constant pain of osteoarthritis. At the time of the procedure, the DePuy ASR hip replacement system transformed her life to such a degree that she agreed to become the “face” of DePuy and promote their hip replacement systems throughout the UK.

Between 2004 and 2008, Penny was DePuy’s “patient brand” and her picture was used extensively throughout the world. Penny also gave interviews about the advantages of the DePuy ASR hip replacement system and counselled patients about to have implant surgery. However, in 2009, Penny started to notice a groin pain which was diagnosed as being caused by the hip replacement system and, as the wear and tear increased, felt a clunking sensation whenever she walked anywhere.

Penny was told that she would need revision surgery which would mean the removal of the DePuy ASR hip replacement system and a replacement system installed.  She underwent her surgical procedure last month, and has been bed-bound and unable to work ever since. “My life has been devastated” Penny said in an interview with her local newspaper, “I not only feel let down personally but also feel guilty that I might have encouraged others to have the ASR implanted.”


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Disabled Teenager Wins Spine Injury Negligence Compensation

October 14, 2011

A teenage girl, who was left paralysed by a spinal surgeon´s negligence, has had a multi-million pounds spine injury negligence compensation settlement approved by the High Court in London.

Laura May (17) of Chorley, Lancashire, was admitted to the Royal Preston Hospital in March 2005 for a procedure to correct a curvature of her spine. However, her orthopaedic surgeon – Dr Roger Battersby Smith – failed to use an imaging technique before operating, and negligently misplaced a screw during the operation.

Due to Dr Smith´s negligence, Laura lost the use of her limbs and is paralysed from the chest down.

After seeking legal guidance, Laura´s parents – Bill and Christine May – sued Dr Smith and the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust for doctor injury compensation and, in 2009, the Royal Court of Justice ruled in favour of Laura and her family.

The High Court has now approved a negotiated settlement which will comprise of a lump sum payment now and periodic payments throughout Laura´s life. The total compensation figure – which is believed to be around 3 million pounds – will provide medical care, specialised accommodation and equipment for Laura, as well as compensating her for future loss of earnings.

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Large Medical Malpractice Compensation Award Anticipated for Boy

June 12, 2011

A ten-year-old boy, who was brain damaged at birth due to alleged medical malpractice, has won his battle for medical malpractice compensation.

Joseph O’Reggio from Wolverhampton, West Midlands, was given birth to in April 2001 at the New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton. Prior to his delivery, Mr Justice Tugendhat heard at London´s High Court, Joe was starved of oxygen and suffered brain damage as a result.

The consequences of his birth injury left Joe suffering with cerebral palsy, wheelchair bound and trying to cope with severe learning difficulties. The Court also heard how Joe is unable to speak or feed by himself.

It was claimed in an medical malpractice compensation action against the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust that medical staff should have realised at an earlier stage that Joe was in distress and brought forward his delivery.

Although the NHS Trust denied that Joe´s injuries were caused by medical malpractice, they agreed on the day before the trial was due to commence to admit 80 per cent liability for the claim, which will now go for assessment of damages.

Mr Justice Tugendhat approved the medical malpractice compensation agreement, expressing his sympathy and best wishes to Joe´s parents.

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1 Million Pounds Heart Surgery Medical Negligence Claims Compensation

May 9, 2011

Two teenagers, who claimed to have suffered disability following heart surgery at the Bristol Royal Infirmary when they were children, have each had heart surgery medical negligence claims compensation awards of 500,000 pounds approved in the High Court.

Kristian Dixon (19) and Jessica Johnson (18) – were both babies when undergoing heart surgery at the hospital in 1992 and 1993 respectively.  Mr Dixon claimed that brain damage sustained when he was just sixteen months caused cognitive and learning difficulties, while Ms Johnson has required permanent care ever since her heart surgery.

It was alleged at the High Court that both had sustained brain damage due to professional misconduct by Surgeon Mr James Wisheart and hospital manager Dr John Roylance – who were struck off following a review into the deaths of 29 babies at the hospital between 1988 and 1995 – and Dr Janardan Dhasmana, who was barred from performing heart surgery at a disciplinary hearing in 1999.

Approving the awards, which were agreed by United Bristol Healthcare NHS Trust without accepting liability, Mr Justice Owen commended the families of both teenagers for the devoted care they had given over the years.

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Ambulance Misdiagnosis Compensation of 40,000 Pounds For Family

April 30, 2011

The family of a Northumberland woman, who died after being misdiagnosed by an ambulance paramedic, has been awarded 40,000 pounds in ambulance misdiagnosis compensation.

Denise Hopper (40) from Alnmouth, Northumberland, was taken to hospital after being involved in a car accident in December 2007, in which she broke several vertebrae and suffered fractured ribs. The paramedic who treated her at the scene also diagnosed that she was suffering from dehydration, when she had deep vein thrombosis. Denise consequently received the wrong treatment on her arrival at the hospital, and two weeks later suffered a heart attack and passed away.

Following an enquiry into her death, Denise’s two children sought legal advice and started an action against the North East Ambulance Service for failing to demonstrate adequate clinical skills. The North East Ambulance Service admitted there had been a failure to make an accurate diagnosis, but did not admit liability for Denise’s death. Nonetheless, a compensation payment of 40,000 pounds for Denise’s children was agreed between legal advisers for the two sides.

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Rib Hospital Injury Claim Settled

March 16, 2011

A woman who woke from surgery to discover her right arm was paralysed, has settled her claim for medical negligence against St. James’s Hospital in Dublin.

Martina Coyne (39), had suffered all her life with the congenital abnormality of an extra rib. The rib caused her to experience pain and some discomfort in the right side of her neck and chest and, in August 2000, she was admitted to the hospital to have it removed.

However, on awaking from her surgery, Martina find that she could not move her right arm while at the same time it was causing her intense pain. It was claimed in the High Court that Martina had asked her doctors to amputate the arm because of the pain she was experiencing.

After investigation, it was argued, that damage had been sustained to the blood vessels supplying blood to Martina’s arm, and corrective surgery was required to mend the damage caused by medical negligence.

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Confusion Reigns over Faulty Hip Replacements

January 26, 2011

Despite assurances by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that the vast majority of people who had DePuy Orthopaedics hip replacements implanted will not need revision surgical procedures, an expert professor from Newcastle has claimed that as many as 50% of Irish victims would need new hips within 6 years.

Dr. Thomas Joyce, a reader in biotribology at the School of Mechanical and Systems Engineering, Newcastle University, has stated during a recent conference in Dublin that, of the 3,516 DePuy hip replacement systems that have been implanted in Ireland since 2003, about 50% will need replacing within 6 years.

His claims are based on studies of over 500 DePuy hip replacement patients in the U.K. – more than half of whom have experienced a joint failure within this period due to the “metallic wear debris” that can cause tissue damage and weaken the bone surrounding the implant. DePuy Orthopaedics Inc has already acknowledged a “higher than expected” failure rate and recalled the faulty ASR Articular Surface and ASR XL Acetabular systemslast year.

However, the HSE states that it has already carried blood tests and precautionary x-rays on 2,022 patients as a precautionary measure, and has found very few who currently require revision surgery. They will continue monitoring the patients over a five year period under an agreement with DePuy Orthopaedics Inc.

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Delayed Brain Tumour Diagnosis Compensation Claim Settled for 4.5 Million

November 23, 2010

An NHS manager, who suffered severe brain damage after a delay in the diagnosis of her brain tumour, has had a 4.5 million pounds compensation claim settled in the High Court.

Frances Bowra (45)of Maidstone, Kent, worked as a chiropody manager, was a volunteer for the charity “Crisis Over Christmas” and a keen dancer and dressmaker when, in 2003, she was taken to Maidstone General District Hospital Accident and Emergency Department after collapsing at home suffering from violent headaches and vomiting.

A delay in diagnosing her brain tumour, and transferring her to Kings College Hospital, London, for an emergency operation lead to Frances’ condition deteriorating, and she now suffers from partial paralysis and visual impairment.

In the High Court, the Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust acknowledged that it had failed in its duty of care, and apologised to both Frances and her family for the errors they had made.

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Epilepsy Misdiagnosis Hospital Compensation Paid to Over 600 Patients

November 19, 2010

618 former patients of a paediatric neurologist, who were negligently diagnosed as suffering from epilepsy, have received epilepsy misdiagnosis hospital compensation payments totalling more than 8 million pounds.

The patients, who were all children when it occurred, were negligently diagnosed with epilepsy by Dr Andrew Holton at the Leicester Royal Infirmary between 1990 and 2001, despite many of them only displaying symptoms of headaches or even just misbehaving. One child, having been prescribed a cocktail of anti-convulsant drugs by Dr Holton for ten years, was later diagnosed as having suffered from autism throughout the whole period.

Following a range of complaints by parents that the medication prescribed for their children´s epilepsy conditions caused the children to suffer side-effects such as blackouts and drug-induced hazes, the General Medical Council (GMC) suspended the doctor from duty and, in 2006, ruled that his professional performance had been “seriously deficient”. The Leicester Royal Infirmary was also criticised in a Department of Health inquiry for their reaction to claims of medical negligence and lack of effective management.

The payments of hospital compensation for epilepsy misdiagnosis have been made throughout the year, and have ranged in value from a thousand pounds to one of 240,000 pounds.

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Hospital Injury Compensation Settlement for Fatal Lack of Care

November 12, 2010

The widow of a 60 year old man, who died in hospital after a routine operation, has agreed a five figure hospital injury compensation settlement after Trafford Healthcare Trust admitted a lack of care in his case.

Chris Harper (60), previously of Salford, Manchester, was a fit and active father of three when admitted to Trafford General Hospital in March 2007 for a routine hip operation. However, after the operation Chris started to suffer pains in his side and chest, and a shortness of breath. Chris died one week later from a blood clot.

In the claim for hospital injury compensation against the hospital, it was alleged that staff were slow to respond to Chris’s complaints and also that he was not given specialist stockings to prevent blood clots. It was also alleged that Chris was not given any physiotherapy until three days after the operation, whereas post-operative support of this nature usually starts on the same day.

After a coroner’s inquest had returned a ruling of misadventure, Mrs. Harper sought legal advice and subsequently filed a claim for medical negligence.  Trafford Healthcare Trust conceded that their lack of care had resulted in Chris’s death and the five figure settlement was agreed.

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Operation Debris Leads to 350,000 Pounds Hospital Injury Compensation

October 21, 2010

A 36-year-old man has received 350,000 pounds in hospital injury compensation after part of a latex surgical glove was left in his throat following hospital surgery.

Wayne Williams, from Tooting, London, was admitted to St. Georges Hospital in South West London for heart surgery in June 2006, during which a tracheotomy was performed to allow him to breathe.

Wayne experienced difficulties breathing following the surgery, and was referred back to the hospital for throat surgery, during which surgeons discovered a small piece of latex left behind in his trachea.

The latex debris was admitted to not only have been the cause of Wayne’s breathlessness, but had also permanently scarred Wayne’s vocal chords.

St. George’s NHS Healthcare Trust admitted liability for medical negligence and the hospital injury compensation settlement of 350,000 was agreed.

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10,000 Pounds for Dentist Negligence

October 19, 2010

A woman whose dentist failed to notice her gum disease has settled a dentist negligence compensation claim for 10,000 pounds after losing six teeth.

Victoria Walker (34) of Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire, has won a five-figure dentist negligence settlement against a Newcastle dentist after visiting a new dentist when she moved in August 2005, who discovered a severe case of gum disease due to dental neglect.

Victoria had visited her previous dentist every six months over a period of three years and, despite having regular x-rays as part of her dental treatment, the gum disease and several other oral problems were never identified.

Remedial treatment included a deep cleansing process with required four sessions with her new dentist and the removal of six teeth to access the diseased area. Victoria took legal advice, and a dentist negligence compensation settlement of 10,000 pounds was agreed.

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Hospital Injury Compensation for Undiagnosed Brain Tumour

September 13, 2010

A former Church of England assistant minister, whose brain tumour was left unattended for three years, is to receive a substantial out of court settlement for hospital injury compensation.

Adrian Underwood, 42, from Birmingham, had been studying a theology course in Nottingham in 2001, when he started to experience severe headaches. He was taken to Nottingham University Hospital, where he underwent a brain scan which revealed a growth inside his skull, but no further action was taken and Adrian was discharged – being told he had nothing more serious than a migraine.

Adrian was unable to finish his course – returning to Birmingham to take the position of a curate. However, his health continued to deteriorate, and it was during a medical investigation in 2004 to determine why Adrian was losing his sight that the much enlarged brain tumour was noticed after a scan at Birmingham Eye Hospital.

An emergency operation removed a tumour the size of a lemon, which had forced down on Adrian’s brain and formed a lump in his head. Adrian now suffers from regular fatigue and epilepsy as a result of this error – medical conditions which could have been avoided if the tumour had been removed after the initial scan.

Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust admitted liability.

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50,000 Pounds Medical Negligence Compensation for Dental Agony Grandmother

September 6, 2010

A 75 year old grandmother has been awarded 50,000 pounds in medical negligence compensation after dentistry malpractice left her in agony and unable to eat.

Mrs Jean Wall of Droylsden, Greater Manchester, had always dreamt of having a Hollywood-like smile, and after consulting with Droylsden based cosmetic dentist, Dr. Oscar Kwame Gagoh, agreed to a schedule of teeth bleaching, crowns and veneers, as well as treatment meant to straighten a crooked front tooth.

The work, which commenced in March 2007, meant that Mrs Wall had to undergo hours of treatment at a time in Dr. Gagoh’s chair, regularly having to have her anaesthetic topped up and with the sessions leaving her in great pain.

Despite Dr. Gagoh’s assurances that the work would be completed “in no time”, the sessions continued, and the agreed price rose regularly from 8,000 pounds to 10,000 pounds, and eventually up to 15,000 pounds.

Mrs Wall refused to pay any extra fees, and complained that the treatment had left her with burned and blistered lips, nerve damage and unbearable dental pain which prevented her from eating, drinking or swallowing properly.

Mrs Wall sought medical and legal advice, and had to undergo a further year of dentistry to correct the errors that Dr. Gagoh had made. Dr. Gagoh refused to acknowledge the claim of negligent treatment, insisting that he had done nothing wrong but, after a three year legal battle, his insurers agreed to the compensation payment.

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