Negligent Medical Advice – Could You Claim For Compensation?

If negligent medical advice from a healthcare professional resulted in you suffering harm you might be able to claim compensation. In this guide, we look at claiming compensation if your health was impacted by inappropriate medical advice. 

negligent medical advice

Negligent medical advice claims guide

In addition, we look at different settings in which this could occur. We also look at potential outcomes for patients who weren’t provided with the correct advice, and the circumstances in which people could claim. 

You should expect a minimum standard of care from medical professionals; if you don’t receive this, then you could experience injury, illness or a worsening of your condition. If this is the case, you might be able to claim compensation. This guide will include examples of compensation payouts for medical negligence. 

To conclude, we look at No Win No Fee agreements and what they entail. You might find using a No Win No Fee solicitor beneficial for your medical negligence claim. 

To get in touch, you can: 

 Select A Section

  1. What Is Negligent Medical Advice?
  2. Who Could Give The Wrong Medical Advice?
  3. What Could Be The Effect Of Negligent Medical Advice?
  4. Does The Bolem Test Apply?
  5. How Much Could You Claim If Harmed By Negligent Medical Advice?
  6. Contact Us To Learn More

What Is Negligent Medical Advice?

When you seek medical attention, you should expect the medical professional to provide a minimum standard of care. This is expected when they are prescribing you medication, making a diagnosis and performing surgery. However, it also applies when they are giving you medical advice. 

In some cases, you might be given the wrong medical advice by a healthcare professional despite them adhering to the duty of care that they owe. For example, your doctor might give you advice on lifestyle changes that they do not realise could be dangerous as you have an undiagnosed underlying condition. In this situation, you may not be able to claim compensation.

Furthermore, you cannot be compensated just for being given the wrong advice; the advice must have caused you harm. For example, if you were initially told to take the wrong dosage of medication but the doctor corrected themselves before you took the first dose, then this would not form the basis of a clinical negligence claim against a GP.

If you are harmed due to receiving the wrong medical advice, you might be eligible to receive compensation. Talk to our advisors to discuss your potential claim. 

Who Could Give The Wrong Medical Advice?

Healthcare providers have a duty to provide a minimum standard of care to their patients. A healthcare provider is anyone who has received medical training and does not just include GPs and doctors in hospitals

Negligent medical advice could be given by:

  • Surgeons
  • Nurses and nurse practitioners
  • Midwives
  • Dentists 
  • Pharmacists
  • Junior doctors
  • Healthcare visitors

Contact our advisors to discuss whether you could claim for harm caused by the wrong medical advice.  

New Claims

Every year the NHS publishes the NHS Resolution Annual Report containing information on new compensation claims filed. 

For 2020/21, there were:

  • 199 new paediatrics claims
  • 1,152 new emergency medicine claims
  • 467 new general medicine claims

What Could Be The Effect Of Negligent Medical Advice?

Being given negligent medical advice could result in your condition becoming worse. Below, we’ve included some examples of how this could occur: 

  • Failure to screen. For example, you may be incorrectly told by your GP that there is no genetic factor to breast cancer. As a result, you don’t tell them about your family history of the disease. Because of this, you’re not offered screening which can check for the condition developing. A failure to diagnose cancer could occur as a result.
  • The negative effects of medication. Your doctor could tell you that you need to take a particular kind of medication with food when it’s actually recommended to take it on an empty stomach. As a result, the way this medication works is affected and you’re unwell for longer than you would have been if you had been given the right advice.

There are circumstances where negligent advice overlaps with another kind of complication relating to medical treatment. For example, you could receive harmful medical advice after a misdiagnosis.

According to the NHS, bladder cancer and a kidney infection can have similar symptoms, including blood in the urine. The antibiotics that are given for a kidney infection, however, are not going to treat bladder cancer. Late diagnosed bladder cancer can spread into other parts of the body and can be more difficult to treat, or even fatal.    

Free health negligence legal advice is available from our advisors. If they feel you have a valid case, they could connect you with a No Win No Fee lawyer from our panel. 

Does The Bolem Test Apply?

To determine whether negligent medical advice was given, the medical negligence claim might be subjected to what is known as a Bolam test. This is used to determine whether your healthcare professional hit a basic minimum standard of care when treating you. 

It involves asking a panel of medical professionals who are trained in the appropriate area whether the care was of an acceptable level or not. If not, then the doctor will have breached their duty of care and you could be entitled to compensation.

On What Grounds Can You Sue For Medical Negligence?

In order to claim medical negligence compensation, you must be able to prove harm was caused to you by a breach in your healthcare provider’s duty toward you. In terms of negligent medical advice, for example, this could mean cancer going from stage two to stage three due to a misdiagnosis, which means you need more intensive treatment once you are properly diagnosed. 

Negligent medical advice time limits

If you are filing a medical negligence claim, a three-year time limit typically applies. This can run from the date you connected the impact on your health with negligence. 

However, there are exceptions to this. Exceptions include:

  • If you are under the age of 18 at the time of being harmed, a litigation friend could start a claim on your behalf. However, if you turn 18 without a claim starting, you have until three years after your 18th birthday to begin the claim yourself. No time limit applies while you’re underage.  
  • If you do not have the mental capacity to claim, the time limit for claiming does not apply while this is the case, and a litigation friend can claim for you. Tou have three years to begin your claim in the event that you recover if one has not been started on your behalf. 

Our advisors can discuss your potential clinical negligence claim. Get in touch today for free legal advice. 

How Much Could You Claim If Harmed By Negligent Medical Advice?

Your compensation claim could be made of two heads; general damages and special damages. We discuss each in the sections below. 

In order to claim negligent medical advice compensation, you might be asked to attend an independent medical exam. This is to learn what impact the negligent advice had on your well-being and future. If you work with a lawyer from our panel, they could arrange this in your local area. 

General Damages

This is the head of your claim that compensates for the pain and suffering caused by your injuries as a result of the medical advice you received. 

Legal professionals use a document called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to help assign value to your injuries. It contains listings of injuries alongside a guideline compensation bracket. We’ve included examples from the 16th edition, released in April 2022 below. 

InjuryPotential CompensationNotes
Female reproductive system£114,900 to £170,280Injury or disease that causes infertility, sexual dysfunction, pain and scarring resulting in severe anxiety and depression.
Female reproductive system£3,390 to £20,430Possible fallopian tube removal due to a delay in diagnosing ectopic pregnancy but without an impact on fertility.
Chest injuries (b)£65,740 to £100,670Function impairments, disability and reduced life expectancy from traumatic chest injury resulting in permanent damage to lung(s) and/or heart.
Severe back injuries (ii)£74,160 to £88,430Severe back injuries with special features including nerve damage resulting in impairments to mobility, sexual, bladder and bowel impairments and scarring.
Bowels (c)In the region of £79,920Passive incontinence and faecal urgency, even after surgery that results in embarrassment and distress, typically following birthing injury.
Severe knee injury (ii)£52,120 to £69,730Permanent constant pain with movement limitations from a leg fracture that extends into knee.
Kidney (b)Up to £63,980Substantial future medical expenses from significant future risk of urinary tract infections or other natural function loss.
Moderately severe psychiatric damage£19,070 to £54,830Significant issues coping with life and relationships, but with an optimistic prognosis.
Wrist injuries (b)£24,500 to £39,170Some useful movement, however, there is a significant permanent disability.
Shoulder injuries (e)£5,150 to £12,240Clavicle fracture.

Special Damages

You could recover costs incurred due to the injuries you sustained after receiving negligent advice from a healthcare professional. To do so, however, you will need to supply evidence, such as receipts, invoices and payslips. 

You could recover:

  • Care costs
  • Home adaptations
  • Cosmetic devices
  • Lost wages and loss of future earnings. 

Contact our advisors for an estimate of your general damages based on the harm caused by the wrong medical advice you received. 

Contact Us To Learn More

To claim compensation you might like to use the services of an experienced medical negligence lawyer. Legal representation can come with large upfront solicitors fees, which may present a barrier to some people. 

Under a No Win No Fee agreement, however, you will not have to pay an upfront solicitors fee. Your solicitor’s payment will instead be taken from the award of your claim if it is successful. This is known as a success fee and is legally capped.

If however, your claim is unsuccessful, you will not pay for your solicitors services. You may also hear this kind of fee structure referred to as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA)

You can discuss the harm caused to you by negligent medical advice with our advisors. Potentially valid claims could be passed onto a medical negligence solicitor from our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors. You can get in touch with us 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

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The following links might be helpful: 

Plus more medical negligence guides from our site: 

If you have any more questions about claiming for the harm caused by negligent medical advice, speak with an advisor today.

Writer Danielle Bibby

Publisher Fern Stiles