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Listeria Outbreaks At NHS Hospitals – What To Do If You Were Affected

Listeria Outbreaks At NHS Hospitals – What To Do If You Were Affected

Listeria Outbreak At NHS Hospitals Compensation Claims

Listeria Outbreak At NHS Hospitals Compensation Claims

Have you been affected by a recent listeria outbreak at an NHS hospital? If you or your child were made ill you could be entitled to compensation. Similarly, if you experienced the personal tragedy of losing a relative because they contracted listeria in an NHS hospital, you could claim compensation on their behalf.

If you, or your next of kin has been affected by a listeria outbreak in an NHS hospital, trust Medical Negligence Assist to handle your medical negligence claim for compensation. We are a well-respected service specialising in medical negligence claims. Our panel of solicitors have three decades of experience handling hospital negligence and clinical negligence claims, and you can rest assured in the knowledge that they will strive to win you the maximum amount of compensation possible.

Call Medical Negligence Assist today on 0800 652 3087 for your free medical negligence claims consultation. One of our friendly advisers will speak to you about what happened and  will provide you with an excellent medical negligence solicitor who will start working on your claim as soon as possible. Alternatively, you can use our online claims form to contact us.

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A Guide On What To Do If Affected By A Listeria Outbreak At An NHS Hospital

The bacteria listeria can infect food, causing an illness called listeriosis when ingested. Listeriosis is an illness with flu-like symptoms, such as a fever, chills, aches and pains, vomiting and diarrhoea. People suffering from listeriosis often get better on their own, however, vulnerable groups can suffer complications, and in extreme cases, may die.

Unfortunately in recent years there have been incidents where people have died after contracting listeriosis in NHS hospitals. Most cases involved people who were already very ill, so were more vulnerable to the infection In 2019,  The Good Food Chain (a business that at the time, supplied prepacked foods to 43 NHS hospitals in the UK) supplied sandwiches contaminated with listeria. The meat used in the sandwiches was supplied by North Country Cooked Meats. Both businesses voluntarily ceased production as a result. This outbreak affected a number of hospitals, including:

  • The University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Trust which resulted in one death.
  • The University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust which saw one death.
  • One case of listeriosis resulting in a death Western Sussex hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
  • One case of listeriosis resulting in a death at Aintree University hospital NHS foundation trust in Liverpool.
  • Two cases of listeriosis at Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust both resulting in deaths.

In addition to these six deaths, there was also
one case at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust and another at East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust that did not result in any fatalities.

If you were affected by a listeria outbreak, you could be entitled to compensation. Medical Negligence Assist has created this guide for people affected by Listeria outbreaks at NHS hospitals. Below, we will explain what listeriosis is, what groups are most affected, how listeriosis is treated and look at some listeria cases in the UK. We will also provide you with advice about making a claim for a listeria infection, how to find a medical negligence solicitor to manage your claim and will advise you on how to make a No Win, No Fee claim.

Remember if you, your child or a close relative have been affected by a listeria infection at an NHS hospital then you might be owed compensation.

Source: www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/aug/01/sixth-person-dies-listeria-outbreak-nhs-sandwiches

What Is Listeria Monocytogenes?

Listeria monocytogenes is a bacteria that can cause listeriosis illness if consumed. The bacteria carries surface proteins called internalins. These are particularly harmful to pregnant women because they can cross the placental blood barrier. There are two types of listeria internalins: internalin A listeria (InIA) and internalin B listeria (InIB).

Listeriosis is caught by eating food that is infected with listeria bacteria. It can infect many types of food but unpasturised milk, dairy products made with unpasteurised milk, soft cheeses such as brie or Camembert, chilled deli meats and pre-packed sandwiches are foods that are more likely to become infected. Because pregnant women are more vulnerable to listeriosis, they are told to avoid these foods. Listeriosis can also be caught from contact with farm animals who have recently had these foods, or eating food prepared by people who are infected with the illness who have not washed their hands.

The symptoms of listeriosis are similar to the flu:

  • A fever.
  • Aches and pains.
  • Vomiting and diarrhoea.

As unpleasant as listeriosis is, the symptoms usually go away by themselves without treatment after a few days. However, some groups of people are more vulnerable to listeria.

Groups More At Risk Of Listeriosis

Some groups of people are more at risk from listeriosis. These include:

  • Pregnant women: Pregnant women are twenty times more at risk from listeriosis than the general population. What’s more, another risk associated with listeria and pregnancy is that listeriosis can be passed onto a foetus. This can cause the mother to lose the baby.
  • Newborn babies: Listeria can also be transferred from the mother to a newborn baby. Listeria baby symptoms can cause bloodstream infections, meningitis or death.
  • People with weakened immune systems: People suffering from conditions that weaken the immune system, such as diabetes, kidney or liver disease, HIV or Aids. Treatments such as chemotherapy for cancer and some medication also weakens the immune system.
  • People aged 65 or over: Listeria can affect people aged 65 or over by spreading to the bloodstream, causing meningitis, which can kill the person. If you are in this age group, you are four times more at risk than the general population of contracting meningitis from listeria.

If you or somebody you know is showing the effects of listeriosis and arein one of these affected groups, call 111 for advice. You may need a blood test and listeria antibiotic treatment.

If you or someone around you, is showing signs of meningitis caused by listeria, call 999 immediately. Meningitis can kill, or result in loss of limbs, so it is essential that the affected person is brought to hospital immediately.

What are the signs of meningitis?

  • Affected by looking at bright lights.
  • Signs of sudden confusion.
  • Severe headaches.
  • Stiff neck.
  • A rash that may look like small red pinpricks, or blotchy like a bruise, which does not fade if a glass is rolled over it.

Effects Of Listeria On The Nervous System

Listeriosis can affect the nervous system, which can result in more serious symptoms, such as convulsions, a loss of balance, a stiff neck, headaches and mental confusion.

What Are The Effects of Listeria In Pregnancy?

Pregnant women are twenty times more likely to get listeriosis compared to the general population. Tragically, listeria pregnancy symptoms can lead to miscarriages, premature births and stillborns. If a baby is exposed to listeria in the womb, they may suffer from listeria symptoms after they are born, such as meningitis, pneumonia or neonatal sepsis.

To avoid listeria during pregnancy the NHS recommends that expectant mothers avoid certain foods listed above, and practice proper hygiene methods when preparing foods. Avoiding contact with farm animals and animal droppings is also important. If you are pregnant and are showing listeria symptoms, call 111 right away.

Listeria Outbreaks At NHS Hospitals

Only in 2019 did a severe listeria outbreak occur in a string of NHS hospitals. Pre-packed sandwiches served to patients at NHS hospitals and supplied by The Good Food Chain, were infected with listeria. Listeria infections broke out in Derby, Leicester, Sussex, Kent, Manchester and Liverpool.6 patients died. The Good Food Chain supplied food to 43 NHS hospitals, meaning that the results of the listeria outbreak could have been catastrophic. This illustrates just how easy it can be to contract listeria.

If you or your child has been made ill because of contracting listeria at an NHS hospital, you could be entitled to claim compensation for your injuries. Contact Medical Negligence Assist today, and if you have grounds to make a claim, we will provide you with an excellent medical negligence lawyer from our panel to handle your case.

Diagnosis, Treatment, And Prevention of Listeriosis

If you are in a group that is more vulnerable to listeriosis, or you have a newborn baby or know an older person who is showing signs of listeriosis, it is vital that you call 111 to make an emergency GP appointment. You may have to have a blood test to diagnose the listeriosis and have to go on listeria antibiotic treatment. This is usually successful. If you are pregnant there may be additional monitoring and ultrasounds of the unborn baby to ensure the foetus is safe and healthy.

What Damages Could A Listeria Outbreak Claim Compensate You For?

If you make a successful medical negligence claim, your compensation package will consist of two heads of claim. The first part is known as general damages. This aims to compensate you for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity experienced as a result of the illness. The second head of claim is known as special damages. The purpose of this is to compensate you for any losses or expenses that you have or will incur, and in more serious cases, the loss of future earnings.

Some examples of special damages you may be able to claim for include:

  • Medical expenses: This can include the cost of hospital treatment and medication. If you lost a limb due to meningitis, you could claim funds to pay for any physiotherapy, rehabilitation treatment or mobility equipment that you might be in need of. In the very tragic circumstance that you lost an unborn baby, or you lost a close relative, you could claim compensation for counselling to help you come to terms with your loss.
  • Travel expenses: You can claim compensation for the cost of travelling to doctor’s appointments and travelling to and from hospitals or GPs, as well as parking fees.
  • At home care expenses: If a friend or family member cared for you at home whilst you were recovering from listeriosis, you can claim an hourly wage for them to cover the time they spent helping you.. Alternatively, if you are left with permanent effects of severe food poisoning, or are now disabled as a result of meningitis, you can claim funds to pay for any care that you now need.
  • Mobility equipment or home adaptation expenses: If you have become disabled as a result of meningitis (for example you lost one or more limbs) and now require mobility equipment, or adaptations to your home or car, you can claim expenses to pay for these.
  • Loss of income: If you were unable to work for a period of time as a result of a listeria outbreak at an NHS hospital, you could be entitled to claim compensation for a loss of income. You could claim for missed salary payments and missed in-work benefits such as pension contributions, bonus payments and sick pay. If your illness is particularly serious and affects your ability to work in the future, you may be able to claim for loss of future earnings.

To begin your claim for an illness caused by a listeria outbreak at an NHS hospital, contact Medical negligence Assist today. If we find that you have grounds to make a claim, we will provide you with an excellent medical negligence solicitor from our panel to handle your case.

Listeria Outbreak Personal Injury Claims Calculator

If you have been made ill because of a listeria outbreak at an NHS hospital, you can use our compensation claims calculator to estimate how much compensation you could be entitled to. (Note, the calculator does not include special damages). How much you can claim depends on how severely ill the listeriosis made you, or your next kin.

Illnesses such as those caused by Listeria (i)There may be different outcomes for those who have experience a permanent effect from their illness and people with short-term symptoms caused by illnesses.£33,700 to £46,040
Illnesses such as those caused by Listeria (ii)Serious illness resulting from food poisoning or similar illnesses which are severe. May impact bowels, sex lift and other things. £8,360 to £16,830
Illnesses such as those caused by Listeria (iii)Illness which causes fatigue and which affects the function of the bowels. Complete recovery may take a year or more.£3,460 to £8,360
Illnesses such as those caused by Listeria (iv)Illness which causes pain, cramps and / or diarrhoea for a period of several weeks. Up to £3,460

Alternatively, call Medical Negligence Assist today to speak to one of our helpful advisers. They will be able to estimate how much you could claim in general damages for a listeria infection, depending on the severity of the illness caused.

No Win No Fee Claims For Listeria Outbreaks At An NHS Hospital

If you have been made ill because of an outbreak of listeria at an NHS hospital, you could be entitled to make a medical negligence claim for compensation. Medical Negligence Assist can put you in touch with a specialist solicitor who will give you the opportunity to enter into a No Win, No Fee Agreement. This means that should your claim be unsuccessful, you will not have to pay any of the fees your solicitor has incurred in pursuing your claim. In the event your claim is successful, your solicitor may ask for a small contribution toward their fees. This is known as a success fee and would be deducted from the compensation you are awarded at the end of your claim. Don’t worry, the success fee is legally capped. Ultimately, this means that you do not have to pay any fees upfront or during your claim, giving you the confidence and peace of mind to pursue justice.

Call Medical Negligence Assist today, to talk about making a No Win, No Fee claim today.

How To Claim Compensation For Listeriosis

If you or your child have contracted listeriosis, or you have lost a close relative because of the illness you could be entitled to compensation. Call Medical Negligence Assist today and if you have been made ill because of food poisoning negligence in hospital, one of our panel of medical negligence solicitors will handle your claim. Our specialist solicitors have over thirty years of experience handling claims for medical negligence and will not rest until they have won for you the maximum amount of compensation possible. They will guide you through the legal process, explaining the legal jargon littering it. And if at any time you have a query or would simply like an update on your case, you can pick up the phone and speak to them right away.

Call Medical Negligence Assist today to begin your claim. We look forward to representing you.

Medical References And Claims Guides

Listeria Cases Being Investigated

Updated Listeria Cases Being Investigated

An NHS Guide To Listeriosis

Medical Negligence Assist Guides

NHS Hospital Negligence Compensation

Still Born Birth Injury Claims

Medical Negligence Compensation Claim Calculator

Article by HC
Editor RBG