Top Tips When Making a Clinical Negligence Claim

| December 19, 2013

Making a clinical negligence claim can feel like a daunting process especially if you are feeling unwell or suffering from an injury that you feel is a result of substandard medical treatment or care that was provided by a healthcare professional. However, with the assistance of an expert medical negligence solicitor, the whole process is made that much easier to understand whether you think you have a case against a hospital, a GP, dentists, cosmetic surgeons or private clinics and hospitals. Below are some top tips/advice when making a clinical negligence claim that should make things clearer for you.

Medical notes

Medical notes can be misread which leads to the wrong medication being given to patients

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1 Everyone Is Entitled to the Right Level of Medical Care

Many people think they cannot make a claim against a healthcare professional they know, even when they feel they have not received the correct level of treatment for a condition they may be suffering from. It is really important to understand that no matter who you are or who the healthcare professional is, if the standard of treatment received has left you injured or suffering from a condition you would otherwise be suffering from – then you are entitled to make a medical negligence claim and receive the right level of compensation.

2 The Importance of Contacting a Reputable Medical Negligence Solicitor

If you feel you have a claim, it is crucial to contact a reputable medical negligence solicitor who boasts a wealth of experience so they can assess your case and tell you if it is “justifiable”. They would also be able to advise on the level of compensation you may be entitled to receive should your case prove to be successful.

3 The Importance of Keeping Accurate Records

It is also crucial that you keep all records of any medical treatment you had to receive because of the negligent treatment you suffered as well as any loss of earnings you may have had to deal with (this information is normally supplied by employers), any travel and out of pocket expenses you may have incurred and any other outgoings you had to pay out as a result of your condition or injury.

healthcare professionals

Even qualified healthcare professionals make mistakes

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4 Make Sure You Understand What Burden of Proof Involves

You need to be aware that it is up to you as the claimant to provide the Burden of Proof in your medical negligence claim. This involves proving the healthcare professional did not provide you with an acceptable level of treatment or care and that as a direct result you suffered further injuries, pain or in the worst case scenario death – this is known as “causation”.

5 Make Sure You Appreciate How Your Case Would Be Funded

Make sure you understand how you are going to fund your medical negligence claim. A reputable solicitor would have discussed this with you from the outset during the “free” consultation their normally offer all clients. You need to ask the solicitor to send everything you have discussed with them during this meeting to you in writing so that you have a hard copy to refer to as and when needed.

6 The Majority of Cases are Settled out of Court

Although most medical negligence cases are hotly disputed by the healthcare professionals and authorities, these claims never usually get to court. Most claims are settled out of court in order to keep the costs of arguing a claim down and it’s a well-known fact that going to court is a costly

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7 Make Sure You Start Your Claim Early

It is really important to start a case as early as you can because there are strict time limits to medical negligence claims. You may think you have a lot of time to gather all the information you need to lodge a claim, but everything takes time and this includes having an independent medical specialist look at your case and then providing the needed report to supports it.

Conclusion

It’s really important to understand all the implications of making a clinical negligence UK claim against a healthcare authority or individual. Although these cases are usually disputed, the majority of them are settled out of court. As long as you have got all the facts of your case ready, the relevant invoices relating to your claim and your medical records to give your solicitor, they would be able to advise you on whether your case is justifiable or not.

 

Image credits:Lucidio Studio and backmanmal

 

 

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