Suffering an injury or ill health as a result of a medical professional’s negligence is not only detrimental to your physical well-being, but it can also be an extremely emotional experience to go through. As patients, we put our faith into medical experts, and to suffer further pain and health issues as a result of their carelessness can be a difficult thing to come to terms with.
Unfortunately, medical negligence cases are not uncommon, and many victims find it difficult to cope with the reality of what has happened to them. However, it’s important to know that you may be able to claim compensation for the physical or emotional trauma you have gone through as a result of a negligent medical practitioner.
For an immediate medical negligence claim assessment, give us a call on 1890 989 289, email us on email@example.com or fill out our Online Enquiry form and we’ll get in touch as soon as possible.
Use the quick links below to read more about different medical negligence claims.
What is Medical Negligence?
Medical Negligence is the term used to describe when a medical professional has caused a patient pain, trauma or injury as a result of their inattention, distraction, or carelessness. In order to claim compensation, your injuries don’t have to be physical or extreme, however, you do need to be able to prove that whatever injury has occurred was due to negligence.
How Do I make a Medical Negligence Compensation Claim?
There are two things you need to be able to prove in order to claim compensation for medical negligence. These are:
- Prove that a healthcare professional failed to carry out their duties responsibly
- Prove that this negligence is what has caused you to be in the position you are in today
You can make a medical negligence compensation claim for anything as long as you are able to prove both of the aforementioned points in relation to your case. Without proof of either of these aspects, it’s unlikely that your case will be eligible for compensation.
Common Types of Medical Negligence Claims
Medication and prescription errors are fortunately not very common, but they can occur. If you have become ill due to a mistake involving your medication or your prescription, then you may be able to claim compensation for negligence. Examples of negligence involving medicine or prescriptions can include:
- Doctors not checking your notes and missing allergies
- Doctors prescribing too much of a medication
- Vendors supplying you with too much medication
- Vendors supplying you with the incorrect medication
Negligent behaviour such as the above is often due to misreading, miswriting or even miscalculation of the amounts needed. This type of negligence can result in some serious side effects if the receipt of the medication consumes the incorrect medicine or dosage. However, may you only pursue a compensation claim against the medical worker if their mistake has caused you actual harm.
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Many types of clinics rely on anaesthesia in order to carry out both routine and serious operations, and other bodily investigations. The job of the anaesthesiologist is a highly skilled one, ensuring that their patient is safely unconscious before any investigations can occur.
Although highly uncommon, situations where a patient has remained aware, but unable to communicate, can occur, and the effects of this experience are not only enormously painful but also extremely traumatic.
If you have experienced anaesthesia awareness, it’s vital you speak with a medical negligence solicitor as soon as possible. They can walk you through the process of claiming compensation for the ordeal you have been put through.
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Complete surgical blunders such as operating on the wrong body part are thankfully very rare, but if these situations do occur, they are an extreme and obvious example of surgical negligence. However, there are other types of surgical mistakes that, although not as severe, are still very distressing. These can include:
- Poorly dressed or repaired surgical wounds
- Damaged internal organs
- Suffering further injuries or illness after surgery
- Damaged nerves
- Loss of sensation
However, it’s important to note that although avoidable mishaps may occur during surgery, a surgeon is sometimes forced to make decisions that can impact you negatively in the short term to ensure your overall safety. Cases where your life has been saved but you have suffered harm need to be examined carefully with a medical negligence solicitor to see if you are liable to claim compensation.
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During a pregnancy, a woman’s obstetric team must closely watch her to ensure any problems are diagnosed and managed properly. This high level of care must continue through to the birth to ensure any issues are dealt with quickly and effectively, and prompt decisions must be made if there are signs of distress or danger during the childbirth.
This might include reverting to a C-section or attempting an assisted delivery. If procedures such as these occur, the mother must undergo a thorough examination to ensure any injuries are identified and repaired.
However, sometimes this standard of care is not always provided to women while giving birth, causing them to suffer unnecessary complications that could otherwise have been avoided. This will amount to medical negligence and a compensation claim may ensue. Commonly a childbirth injury claim will arise due to:
- A poorly repaired episiotomy
- Missed third and fourth-degree perinatal tears
- Placental abruption
- Internal organ damage during a caesarean section
Childbirth injury claim – Injuries to the baby
Medical errors and negligence can also affect babies, either while they are still in the womb, or during labour. If a newborn child is consequently left with permanent problems due to the negligence of the family’s medical team, you will be in a position to claim compensation.
Commonly childbirth injury claims involve:
- Poorly managed gestational diabetes
- Erbs Palsy/brachial plexus injuries
- Hip dysplasia
- Injuries from a ventouse or forceps delivery
- Cerebral palsy
Cerebral Palsy is caused as a result of interrupted blood or oxygen flow to the brain. Although it can be a result of surgical complications, serious infections and brain injuries, it is nearly always linked to birth issues.
Symptoms can vary hugely, from the condition being so mild it’s difficult to detect, to so severe that it is extremely disabling. However, whatever the degree of cerebral palsy, if it was caused because of the negligence of medical professional, you will be in a position to claim compensation.
Compensation amounts will reflect how serious the level of the illness is, with higher amounts being awarded to families who have to provide life long care to the individual suffering with the illness.
Compensation will allow families to purchase specialist equipment and care for their loved ones, as well as recuperate any loss of earnings as a result of having to provide any care themselves.
There are many circumstances that can result in a person acquiring a brain injury, but when the injury is due to medical error, it’s often as a result of one of the following situations:
- Operation complications (the operation doesn’t need to be related to the brain or head)
- Lack of oxygen during surgery
- Tumour treatment errors
- Problems with anaesthesia
Brain injuries of all severities can be life changing, and so to suffer one due to the negligent care of a medical professional can be difficult to come to terms with. If you believe negligence caused you or a loved one to suffer a brain injury, it’s important you speak to a medical negligence solicitor as soon as possible.
You can find more information about brain injuries in Ireland, the support available to you and further details on how to claim compensation here.
Dental negligence can occur both in oral health dentistry as well as cosmetic dentistry. Common dental negligence claims tend to come from the following issues:
- Removal of incorrect tooth/teeth
- Failure to diagnose a dental condition
- Failure to treat a dental condition
- Damage to jaw, gums or other teeth due to forcefully carried out work
- Poorly carried out cosmetic dentistry, such as:
- Poorly installed teeth implants – loose or broken, or damage to jaw
- Poorly installed crowns or veneers
- General dissatisfaction with cosmetic work due to appearance
Whatever the specifics of your dental negligence claim, it’s important to speak with medical negligence expert as soon as you feel you are the victim of negligence.
Incorrect or delayed diagnoses of disease or illness can cause havoc on the health of those affected. These types of medical negligence cases can lead to a patient suffering from:
- Lower chances of recovery
- Injuries that could have been avoided
- Pain that could have been avoided
- Longer duration of illness
With serious illnesses such as cancer, HIV or meningitis, these delayed diagnoses can be incredibly dangerous, and even fatal.
However, there are situations where these types of cases can sometimes overlap with misdiagnosis. This means that the medical professional provided an incorrect diagnosis, but made the mistake made was deemed reasonable due to the specific circumstances.
In order to pursue a medical compensation claim, you must be able to prove that your medical professional was actually negligent. Examples of where negligence is more likely, could include:
- Refusal to offer medical tests requested by patient
- Refusal to examine the patient at first possible opportunity
- Dismissal of patients concerns
Gastric Bypass Errors
Gastric band surgery is becoming an increasingly common procedure, and although all patients should be made aware of the accompanying risks when deciding to go through with it, there can be some complications.
Inflammation of the stomach, issues with the position of the band, or complete prolapse of the band can cause huge amounts of discomfort and on going issues in patients. A medical negligence solicitor can help you make a compensation claim if it’s deemed that negligence caused any errors during surgery.
Hospitals are home to many types of infectious bugs and diseases, and it’s the medical institution’s duty to ensure efforts are made to prevent them from spreading. However, elongated stays in hospitals can make you more susceptible to contracting such infections, and depending on the infection, the results can be very severe, even fatal.
Bacterial infections such as MRSA are contracted in hospitals through skin-to-skin contact with someone carrying the bacteria. Having surgical wounds, catheters or burns can make it easier for bacteria to enter the body, which is why medical teams must adhere to extremely strict hygiene rules to ensure infections don’t break out. If it is thought that these have not been followed accordingly, a negligence claim can be pursued.
Care/Nursing Home Neglect
When you put your trust and money into an institution that promises to care for your loved one with respect, dignity and vigilance, it is heart breaking to learn that they have treated them otherwise.
There are situations where the care provided for vulnerable people is unacceptably poor, and residents of care homes can suffer preventable medical issues as a result. These can include:
– Pressure ulcers or bed sores
These develop when the skin is in contact with a bed for long periods of time and are more common in elderly, immobile or diabetic patients. If left untreated, or treated poorly, these can become infected and lead to further complications.
– Medication miscalculations/errors
Medication errors can happen to anyone, however, older people are more likely to be vulnerable to the effects of an incorrect dosage or incorrect drug. Furthermore, it’s common that elderly patients aren’t aware of what their prescriptions should be.
– Injuries or fractures from falls or handling errors
Elderly people are generally more susceptible to trips and falls, but in care homes it’s the carers duty to ensure they are provided with the correct mobility aids and are adequately supervised. Further more, careless handling can cause injuries to elderly people, which can have long-term complications.
Not all injuries in care homes will be due to negligence, but accidents and illnesses can be prevented if dutiful care is provided.
Medical Negligence Claims with Gibson & Associates
Our ‘Why Choose Us’ page explains everything you need to know about the compensation claim process. Here, you can also find out more information about our experienced personal injury* solicitors.
At Gibson & Associates, we have a huge amount of experience handling medical negligence claims, and we pride ourselves in our ability to deal with these sensitive cases with respect and precision. Speak to our injury and negligence solicitors today and find out how we can help you.
Give us a call on 1890 989 289, email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out our Online Enquiry form and we’ll get in touch as soon as possible.
*In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement