Private Healthcare Medical Negligence & Compensation Claims

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Private Healthcare Medical Negligence Compensation Claims Guide – How To Claim Against Private Healthcare In The UK

Private healthcare medical negligence claim

Private healthcare medical negligence claim

You’re probably aware that if a medical professional causes you to suffer through an act of negligence, you could be eligible to sue them for compensation.  A personal injury lawyer could help you claim for private healthcare medical negligence too.

This guide explains the different scenarios which you could entitle you to claim compensation for medical negligence, what to do following an injury, and how we could help you file a No Win No Fee claim.

Using an experienced medical negligence solicitor could make the difference between being awarded the correct level of compensation or not following a breach of duty of care by a medical professional.

If you’d like to begin a claim for private healthcare negligence, please call one of our specialists today on 0800 652 3087. Our advisers offer free legal advice and would conduct a free assessment to see if you could be eligible for compensation for medical negligence.

To find out more about making a medical negligence claim, please continue reading this helpful guide.

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A Guide To Claiming Compensation For Private Healthcare Medical Negligence

Private healthcare professionals owe their patients the same duty of care as an NHS medical professional. In short, they need to do all they can to ensure the patient remains safe throughout their treatment. Failure to do so, which leads to a patient suffering harm, could be deemed clinical negligence and be grounds to file for medical negligence compensation.

This guide provides valuable information on many different scenarios which could lead to a private healthcare medical negligence claim. Claims could be made against a private doctor, a private hospital, or against the private healthcare provider who operates a medical facility. The types of claim we’ll discuss include cancer misdiagnosis, a childbirth injury, surgical errors or a delayed diagnosis causing a patient to suffer.

We’ll explain why a medical professional could be deemed negligent, how long you have to claim, and what you should do if you suspect your injuries were caused by the negligence of a medical professional.

If, after reading this guide, you’re unsure whether you’d be able to claim or not, why not give us a call? It costs nothing to check as we offer a free initial assessment of your claim. If we believe you have a strong case, we could introduce you to a one of our panel of medical negligence solicitors who offer a No Win No Fee service when representing you.

Claims for private healthcare medical negligence can be made against doctors, nurses, surgeons, care home staff, beauty technicians, anaesthetists, dentists and midwives to name a few examples. Claims can be made following negligence in medical treatment and cosmetic procedures too.

The types of private healthcare establishment a claim could be against include:

  • Private hospitals
  • Dental surgeries
  • Private care homes
  • Doctor’s surgeries
  • Beauty salons

What Is Private Healthcare Medical Negligence?

The number of different injuries that could lead to a medical negligence claim are too many to list. However, to help you decide if you could be eligible to make a claim or not, take a look at this definition of medical negligence:

  • When a medical professional treats you in a substandard way which causes you to become ill, be injured or for an existing condition to be made worse

If you believe this definition fits your own experience, you may be eligible for compensation. It doesn’t matter how large or small the injuries were, if they were caused by the negligence of a medical professional, you might be able to begin a claim. To find out more, please contact a member of our team today.

Different Types Of Private Healthcare Medical Negligence

Over the coming sections of this guide, we’re going to look at the different types of private healthcare medical negligence that could lead to a personal injury claim for compensation.

If you don’t see your type of injury or negligence listed here, don’t worry, these are just some of the more common types that we deal with. If your injuries were caused by a medical professional’s negligence, we could still assess whether you’re able to make a claim or not.  Call today to find out what options are available to you.

Childbirth Private Healthcare Medical Negligence

The training that midwives, nurses, doctors and paediatricians receive before they’re allowed to assist in the childbirth process is amazing. It means that by the time you enter the maternity ward at a private hospital, you should be in the best hands possible.

Therefore, if a medical professional involved in the birth of your child is negligent which causes you or your baby to suffer, you could seek compensation against the hospital.

Claims for negligence which cause injuries for a mother or baby during pregnancy, labour or post-birth could be caused by:

  • Staff not following the correct procedures
  • Incorrect equipment being used
  • The failure to spot a problem
  • Dealing with a problem incorrectly
  • Failing to contact a consultant when help is required

If you’ve suffered an injury or your baby has suffered because of one of the above, you might be eligible for compensation.

Some injuries to babies which could lead to a claim include:

  • Moderate or severe Cerebral Palsy
  • Brain damage caused by asphyxiation
  • Scarring
  • Broken bones
  • Displaced joints
  • Stillborn or wrongful death

And here is a similar list of injuries to a mother during childbirth:

  • Avoidable perineal tears
  • Anaesthetic mistakes
  • Episiotomy errors
  • Pre-Eclampsia misdiagnosis
  • Infections caused by poor hygiene levels
  • Organ damage during a caesarean section

Private Hospital Surgical Negligence Claims

Any surgical procedure comes with an element of risk. Usually, the surgeon or a member of their team, would explain the procedure they are going to carry out and any potential risks. They may even ask you to sign a waiver, or a consent form.

That won’t stop you claiming compensation if they cause you to suffer harm through negligence though. Here are some examples of what could lead to a medical negligence compensation claim following surgery:

  • If you suffer any complications because items of surgical equipment are left inside you. This could include surgical instruments, swabs or clamps
  • When you wake up during surgery because of an anaesthetic error. This could lead you to suffer pain and distress
  • If any of your internal organs, muscles or nerves are damaged during surgery
  • Where suturing,  surgical clips or clamps fail causing you to suffer and require further remedial treatment
  • If you, or a family member in emergency situations, weren’t told of the risks associated with surgery
  • And where open wounds weren’t dressed appropriately following surgery leading to an infection

A claim could be possible if you’ve suffered because any of the above happened to you before, during or after surgery. We could help you begin a claim against the surgeon, or the private hospital involved. Please contact us for a free assessment of your claim.

Negligent Medical Advice And Prescriptions

Doctors have a duty of care towards their patients. This means they need to provide appropriate guidance and keep patients in their care as safe as possible during treatment. If they fail to act properly, a patient could sue them for medical negligence if their actions or lack of appropriate treatment/care, caused them to suffer.

In short, if a doctor gives poor advice to a patient, or fails to advise the patient of any side effects/risks associated with their treatment, the doctor could be liable for any suffering if the patient as a consequences suffers harm.

With regards to prescriptions and medication, a doctor could be held liable for any suffering if:

  • They prescribed the wrong medication
  • The wrong dosage was prescribed
  • They diagnosed the wrong condition meaning the patients true condition wasn’t treated properly

If you believe your doctor has given you poor advice, or prescribed the wrong medication which has caused you to suffer, contact our team of specialist medical negligence advisers to discuss whether you could make a claim for medical negligence.

Private Healthcare Misdiagnosis

When you visit a private healthcare facility because you’re worried about your health, you expect the best level of care possible, and you probably put a lot of faith in what a doctor/medical professional tells you.

This means that if the doctor gets something wrong, you might lose faith in their ability to treat you correctly, but you might also suffer medical consequences too. Should this be the case, you could be eligible for compensation for any suffering caused by the doctor’s negligence.

If a doctor misdiagnoses your condition it could mean that:

  • Your symptoms get worse because your condition is left untreated
  • Your condition worsens because of the delay in treatment. With conditions like cancer, this can have devastating consequences
  • The treatment you, therefore  have to undergo is more aggressive and painful
  • The condition becomes is not treatable. In the most serious cases, this could mean your condition has to be managed for the rest of your life, or you could die because the condition was never spotted/diagnosed

Therefore, it’s only right that you should consider claiming for private healthcare negligence compensation for any suffering that it has caused you.

Severity Of Injuries Caused By Medical Negligence

You might be wondering how severe your injuries have to be before you could eligible for compensation. The truth is, it doesn’t matter how little you suffer, any type of suffering caused by medical negligence is too much, and could mean you are entitled to seek compensation.

Of course, a serious mistake at a private hospital that results in the death of a patient, or leads to life-changing injuries, could mean a high level of compensation being awarded. However, if you suffer a minor injury, you’re just as entitled to seek compensation by filing a medical negligence claim.

Making a private healthcare medical negligence could be possible for a variety of reasons. As explained, if the injury you sustained caused you to suffer physical or mental injuries (and possible financial losses too), you may be entitled to claim compensation from the healthcare provider. Treatment of diseases caused by bacterial infections is carried out with the help of antibiotics represented by natural, semi-synthetic, and synthetic forms. Broad-spectrum antibiotics of the new generation, the list of which includes drugs with different chemical structures, differ in effectiveness, duration of treatment, and side effects.

We are happy to help with claims, no matter how minor or severe, to ensure you’re compensated appropriately. Therefore, give us a call to discuss your case.

Private Medical Negligence Claims Vs NHS Negligence Claims

Whether you’re claiming for medical negligence against the NHS or a private healthcare provider, the claims process is similar.

The main difference is that you might have signed some form of contract with the private provider. If the contract indicates what a successful outcome will look like which was not achieved, you may be able to pursue a case on that basis.

Furthermore, before you are treated, all of the possible side effects and risks associated with the procedure should have been explained to you. If that hasn’t happened, and you suffered one of the side effects, you could claim because it would have been impossible for you to fully consent to the procedure due to your lack of knowledge of associated risks.

In any type of claim, even if the risks were explained and regardless of the contract, if it can be shown that the medical professional was negligent which caused you to suffer, you could be entitled to file a claim for compensation in the same way as you would if you made an NHS negligence claim.

It’s not just medical surgery, or GP treatment that you can claimed for either. Private medical treatment includes cosmetic surgery as well as enhancements offered by beauty technicians.

Time limits In Which To Claim For Private Healthcare Medical Negligence

As with any personal injury claim, a claim for hospital malpractice, private GP negligence, or any type of other private healthcare negligence, your claim must be made within the personal injury claims time limit. Currently, in the UK, these are as indicated in the table below.

Type of medical negligence claimTime Limit
Claim against a private healthcare provider (adult)3 years
Claim against a private healthcare provider (child)A parent can claim until the child is 18 or the child has 3 years from their 18th birthday to make their own claim.

Your time limit will usually begin on the day you sustained your injury. However, it’s possible in some cases that you won’t find out about your illness or injury until another doctor diagnoses them. Therefore, the time limit would begin from that date. If you’re unsure whether your claim is within the time limit or not, please get in touch with one of our team and they will clarify this for you.

I Have Been Harmed By Private Healthcare Negligence, What Could My Claim Include?

When a medical negligence solicitor begins a claim, they have a number of different ‘heads of loss’ which they can use. They’ll use different types of losses depending on how you were affected by your injuries. Some cover physical and mental injuries, while others cover financial losses caused by the negligence.

Here are some potential heads of loss that could be used:

  • General Damages: This element of compensation is used to compensate you for the loss of amenity, pain and suffering caused by your injuries
  • Lost Income: When you need to take time off from work to recover from your injuries (or to attend treatment), if you lose some of your income, you could claim it back – awarded as special damages
  • Future Lost Income: When your injuries have a long-term effect on you meaning you need to take more time off from work in the future, change roles or stop working altogether, you could claim for future lost income too – awarded as special damages
  • Travelling Expenses: It’s quite likely, following an injury caused by medical negligence, that you might need to travel to and from treatment sessions on numerous occasions. If that’s the case, you might be able to claim the fuel and parking costs back – awarded as special damages
  • Care Costs: Some people suffer so much that they require professional care during their recovery. If that’s the case, you could claim the cost of the carer back in your claim – awarded as special damages
  • Medication Costs: Not everyone in the UK receives free prescriptions. This means that following your injuries, you could incur quite a large bill for prescriptions or over the counter medicines. You could include the cost of these medicines in your claim – awarded as special damages

Expenses

To help your solicitor prove your claim for any financial losses, you must keep a log of all costs you incur due to your injuries. Keep hold of receipts and bank statements too. Your solicitor will need to explain why you are claiming for each item so be prepared to explain how the expense was linked to your injuries.

For general damages, your solicitor will need to prove how severe your injuries were to ensure you receive the correct level of compensation. Therefore, they’ll use medical records and a report from an independent doctor to show how you were affected by your injuries. They’ll also look at whether you’ll suffer any ill effects in the future too.

No Win No Fee Claims For Private Healthcare Medical Negligence

You might think that using a solicitor to make a private healthcare medical negligence claim would be expensive. It might even put you off from beginning a claim. That’s why our panel of medical negligence solicitors work on a No Win No Fee basis.

They don’t want you to worry about the costs of claiming. As such, when you make a claim, your agreement will clearly show that you don’t need to pay an upfront fee to start the claim. Furthermore, if the claim is unsuccessful, you don’t have to pay your solicitor anything because the ‘success fee’ would be waived.

In fact, you’ll only pay the solicitor’s success fee if you receive compensation and the amount (success fee) is deducted automatically from the amount you are awarded. This reduces the financial risk involved with claims as you don’t need to find the money yourself.

If you would like to know more about how No Win No Fee Agreements work, please contact an adviser. Our panel of solicitors offer a No Win No Fee service as they believe it means more people can claim because it reduces the amount of stress involved.

How Medical Negligence Assist Could Help You

If you’re now ready to begin a personal injury claim for private medical negligence, and you’d like to use us to help you, then you can contact us by:

  • Calling our specialist team of advisors on 0800 652 3087. They’re available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day
  • Filling in our online claims form to request a call back when it’s most convenient for you

Remember, we could help you even if you’re not ready to start your claim. We can answer any questions you have and provide free legal advice too. If you’re ready to begin, we’ll assess your claim for free and help you decide whether your claim is valid or not. There’s no pressure from us and you’re under no obligation to proceed to make a claim.

Private Healthcare Medical Negligence Resources

Thanks for taking the time to read our guide about private healthcare medical negligence. To assist you further, here are some more useful guides and resources:

Independent Hospital Inspections – A programme of inspections from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Independent Healthcare Services – Information from the government about how the application process private medical practitioners must go through.

Who Regulates Healthcare? – A guide from the Health and Safety Executive about who governs healthcare services.

Misdiagnosis Claims – This guide explains when a personal injury solicitor could help with a misdiagnosis claim.

Birth Injury Claims – Information about the different types of injury, to mother or baby, which could lead to a claim.

Surgical Errors – This guide provides information about when a mistake during surgery could entitle you to compensation.

If you require any further information, please contact us right away from free medical negligence advice.

Article by BH

Editor Honey