Somerset Medical Negligence Solicitors

MEDICAL COMPENSATION CLAIM SPECIALISTS

Somerset’s NHS hospitals have experienced problems in recent years. Although Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton is the largest General Hospital in Somerset, [MPH serves a population of over 340,000], it is the smaller Yeovil District Hospital that is been the subject of most controversy.

In particular, a report published in 2014 on the NHS Choices website described the Somerset hospital as one of just 29 in the UK to be rated as “poor” – in particular with regard to a lack of open and transparent reporting of safety risks. This was particularly concerning for those using the hospital given that it had earlier been granted an ‘Excellent’ rating for its service quality by t

he Healthcare Commission in both 2008 and 2009. The 2014 poor rating followed an earlier decision in 2012 by Monitor to describe the trust running YDH as a “high risk”, which in turn led to a decision in oncerns about short-term financial problems at Yeovil District Hospital.

However Musgrove Park Hospital itself hasn’t been immune from the recent problems. Private provider Vanguard Healthcare Solutions was recently found guilty of neglecting patients at Musgrove Park Hospital when only 25 out of 62 patients treated by them had a normal recovery. 50% of patients reported a poor recovery, according to lawyers, despite the fact that cataract operations generally have a very low rate of complications — usually one in 400 rather than the one in two experienced by Vanguard’s patients.

And in 2011, the Shepton Mallet Treatment Centre, run by private healthcare firm UK Specialist Hospitals, was found to have claimed almost £7 million of taxpayers’ money for operations that were never carried out.

VICTIM OF A MEDICAL ERROR IN SOMERSET? CALL US NOW

The vast majority of us entirely trust NHS staff to give us the right level of care and medical assistance, and to treat us properly when we ask for their help or we get poorly. Every now and then, nevertheless, things simply go wrong. When this takes place in a healthcare setting, the consequences can be catastrophic, creating life-changing problems, or even resulting in death.

If you have experienced negligent medical treatment and suffered some sort of physical injury, irrespective of whether you were a private patient, or sought treatment on the NHS, you have a right to compensation.

Wherever you live in Somerset, if you are thinking of making a medical negligence claim and you need expert legal advice, our specialist solicitorsSomerset Medical Negligence Solicitors. Law Society Solicitors Panel logo. can help.Somerset Medical Negligence Solicitors. AvMA Solicitors Panel.

MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE – THE NEED FOR ACCREDITED SPECIALISTS

Many years ago, solicitors were like GPs – one solicitor would have handled everything for you – from, conveyancing and divorce to business law and accident claims. Those days are long gone. The best solicitors are specialists – and medical negligence, above all, requires really specialist knowledge and experience. Why? It’s not just that the law and procedure surrounding medical negligence is complex – it is. To give you the best chance of winning the compensation you deserve, your solicitor will need to properly understand your medical records – that includes viewing x-rays, deciphering GP records and hospital notes and reading medical reports.

FINDING YOUR SPECIALIST SOLICITOR

“Whenever choosing a solicitor in clinical negligence look for our quality mark. We can only recommend solicitors who we have accredited through our robust and independent system.”

Those words are not ours – they come from the website of Action against Medical Accidents [also known as AvMA], which is the highly regarded UK charity set up to support victims of medical negligence. [Clinical negligence is simply another term for medical negligence].

Our team includes accredited members not only of the AvMa panel, but also of the Clinical Negligence Solicitors Panel run by the Law Society – both these panels involve a highly rigorous accreditation process – so in picking a solicitor on one of these panels, you know you’re getting an independently assessed expert. It’s also worth bearing in mind that there are well over 120,000 qualified solicitors in England and Wales these days – but only around 180  ever make it onto both of these panels.

WHAT IS MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE?

Being unhappy with the medical treatment carried out by a doctor or similar health professional is sadly not unusual. However this is not the same as medical or clinical negligence.

Medical negligence only refers to the most serious failures of care, and often results in legal action and an award of compensation.

NO WIN NO FEE MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE

Claiming compensation following a medical error involves expensive legal bills. But you don’t need to worry about paying legal costs if you instruct us – our team can run your claim using a no win no fee arrangement.

SOMERSETHOME OR HOSPITAL VISITS AVAILABLE

If you are unable to travel, we can arrange to have one of our experienced medical negligence solicitors visit you in your home or in hospital anywhere in Somerset, Wiltshire, Dorset or Hampshire. Alternatively we can make arrangements to see you in offices we use in Somerset, or you can instruct us by phone, email or video call.

FREE MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE ADVICE IN SOMERSET – CALL TODAY

The initial phone assessment of your claim and your first 30 minute appointment with us are both completely FREE – so call us now.

HOW OUR MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE SOLICITORS CAN HELP YOU

  • We will collect evidence to prove a clear link between your medical treatment and the injuries you suffered
  • Our team will obtain reports from our panel of expert medical experts about the effect that your injuries will affect on your day-to-day life in future
  • Where our lawyers are able to persuade the insurance company representing the hospital or doctor involved to accept responsibility for causing your injuries, we will arrange interim payments as soon as we can to purchase any equipment that you may require to be as independent as possible, and to cover any of your out-of-pocket expenses

DON’T DELAY MAKING YOUR CLAIM

Too many people miss out on the medical negligence compensation they deserve because they did not claim in time.

There is a strict time limit on making medical compensation claims, so don’t be tempted to delay too long before you pick up the phone – or you risk losing your right to the compensation you deserve entirely.

I HAVE SEEN THE TERMS MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE, MEDICAL MALPRACTICE, CLINICAL NEGLIGENCE AND HOSPITAL COMPENSATION USED. ARE THEY DIFFERENT?

No, these terms are used interchangeably and they all refer to bringing negligence claims against any medical services provider or practitioner such as a hospital or GP surgery. It is however likely that you will see the terms medical negligence and clinical negligence used most commonly

I AM THE VICTIM OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE BUT I’M CONCERNED ABOUT SUING MY DOCTOR PERSONALLY. IS THIS NECESSARY?

Rather than claiming against the doctor himself, we usually claim against the NHS Trust that employed them. This is not always the case though, particularly if you were a private patient, in which case we will look at the details of your case and decide on the most appropriate direction to take.

MY INJURY WAS CAUSED BY A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL WHO WASN’T A DOCTOR? CAN I STILL CLAIM COMPENSATION?

 Yes, any healthcare professional can be guilty of medical negligence and if you were injured as a result, you deserve to be compensated. Here at Bonallack and Bishop, we have has pursued claims on behalf of our clients against dentists, nurses, ambulance drivers, pharmacists and physiotherapists, not just hospitals.

AM I STILL ENTITLED TO CLAIM IF I WAS A PRIVATE MEDICAL PATIENT?

Yes, whether you were treated privately or within the NHS, you could be entitled to make a claim.

WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON TYPES OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE CLAIMS?

• Misdiagnosis
This can be particularly distressing, either if you’ve been told you have a condition which it is then found you do not have, or, perhaps more worryingly, being erroneously given the all-clear and later finding out that you have a condition which has got progressively worse and could have been cured or treated earlier. Cancer misdiagnosis is particularly worrying and can be life-threatening. This particular form of medical misdiagnosis one of the most common forms of medical negligence.

• Birth injuries or defects
Giving birth is complicated and full of risks, but medical negligence can increase these risks and result in birth defects or injuries to the mother or baby through the incorrect administering of drugs or through procedural errors causing damage or injury to the baby. In these cases, the negligence may cause injuries or damage which will last for the lifetime of the child, potentially being huge in terms of the financial implications. In terms of the average financial compensation, these cases are particularly prominent.

• Nursing negligence
Nurses have a duty of care to ensure that their patients are comfortable and well looked after, and investigations a few years back into Staffordshire Hospital, for example, found that nurses were leaving patients without adequate food and water, leaving them to have to drink from flower vases in order to stop themselves dehydrating. Most people would agree that this sort of negligence is shocking and unacceptable, and low staffing levels and budget cuts in the NHS have meant that nursing negligence is, unfortunately, on the rise.

• Failure in sterilisation or abortion
In cases where a person’s sterilisation or an abortion has failed, a child can be born unexpectedly whereas otherwise it would not have been expected or desired. In this case, the financial implications for the parents can be huge and this is taken into account when medical negligence is assessed, and compensation levels are decided. It is for this reason that compensation payouts for the negligence involved in a failed sterilisation cases tend to be quite high.

• General NHS negligence
The NHS, as a whole, tends to operate as a slick and well-oiled machine. However, things can go seriously wrong. In the case, for example, that following a stroke or heart attack an ambulance takes an unreasonable amount of time to reach you and you later suffer brain damage or other organ damage due to a lack of oxygen, you may be able to seek a claim for medical negligence against the NHS as a whole or a part of it, such as the ambulance service.

• Surgical negligence
This covers a wide range of errors – including anything from inadequate pain relief during surgery to having the wrong organ removed by a surgeon. As you might imagine, the levels of compensation involved tend to reflect the seriousness of the situation and the potential long-term suffering and loss of earnings.

If you suspect that you might have suffered from negligence at the hands of a medical professional, you should seek the advice of a professional medical negligence solicitor, who will be able to look at your case independently and advise as to whether or not the NHS might have a case to answer. If they do, it is quite possible that you might be due financial compensation.

LIVE IN SOMERSET? VICTIM OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE? CALL US NOW

Don’t let worries and concerns stop you from putting your negligence claim forward.

Our solicitors have enormous experience of appointing the right medical expert – whether you are considering a compensation claim against the NHS or a private hospital or clinic,  don’t leave getting the right independent medical advice to chance.

  • Call us free on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 or
  • Complete the email contact form below