When you visit a doctor, get treated in a hospital, or go to the dentist, you entrust them to provide professional care and treat your condition appropriately. Unfortunately, that is not always the case and sometimes your condition may worsen due to receiving the wrong care. Medical negligence cases can be complicated, but if you have received the wrong or careless treatment, then you may be able to receive compensation.
What Is Clinical Negligence?
Cases of negligence on part of the provider are assessed by what care you should have received compared to what you did receive. When trying to prove the case in court, the standard is not if the care you received is what other doctors would do, but what should have been done. The court may take into consideration alternative courses of treatment that may have provided a better outcome to consider if the provider acted negligently.
Filing a Claim
Although some outcomes may not be settled immediately, a claim should be filed by a medical negligence lawyer in Middlesbrough as soon as the negligence and its effects are evident. Since most cases will be against NHS, as they are the largest provider of medical services in the United Kingdom, they can take 12 months or longer to decide.
Although the NHSLA, or the National Health Service Litigation Authority, pledges to settle cases of negligence in 12 months, they can take much longer. Providers will often deny they committed negligence, which leaves the burden of proof on the plaintiff. A solicitor will bring in medical experts to try to show the course of treatment a patient received was not what should have been done and the damage it caused.
Filing for a Family Member
If the person who received the care is under 18 or cannot represent themselves due to their mental state, the injuries they received, or if they are deceased, then you can file as a “litigation friend”. If the patient died due to their care, then the focus of the case will be on the emotional stress, pain, and impact of their loss on the family.
Otherwise, the negligence case will focus on how the injuries received affected the life of the patient and how it may impact the rest of their life. If you win your case, the court considers two elements when awarding damages: compensation for the effects of the injury, which includes pain and suffering, and compensation for financial losses the patient, or family, incurred.
If you think you may have a case for clinical negligence, you need to consult a solicitor. They can determine if you do have a case, and then file it for you.