This guide will discuss the eligibility criteria for claiming for medication errors in care homes. Have you or a loved one suffered harm due to medical negligence? Maybe a care home has given you the wrong medication, and this has caused you harm. This guide will explore what makes a valid medical negligence claim or care home claim for a medication error.
Additionally, we will also discuss what evidence you need to provide in order to make a successful claim. Furthermore, we will provide examples of compensation brackets you may receive following a successful claim.
If you have any questions while reading this guide, you can contact a member of our team for support. Our advisors can answer any of your questions regarding medical negligence or care home claims and can offer you free legal advice.
Select A Section
- What Are Medication Errors In Care Homes?
- Why Do Medication Errors In Care Homes Occur?
- Care Homes’ Duty Of Care
- Reporting A Care Home Medication Error
- What Could You Claim For Medication Errors In Care Homes?
- No Win No Fee Agreements For Care Home Medication Error Claims
Medication errors are classified as a patient safety incident (PSI). They can happen at any stage of prescribing, preparing, administering, dispensing and monitoring of medication. Healthcare professionals, such as doctors, pharmacists, GPs and nurses, could be responsible for a medication error. Additionally, medication errors can happen in various settings, including care homes, hospitals and pharmacies.
Patients in care homes are often elderly or suffering from long-term health problems. These complicated health needs mean patients are often required to take various different forms of medication. If there are any errors in providing a patient with the correct medication in a care home, this could greatly worsen any existing conditions.
To make a successful medication error claim, you must be able to prove that you suffered harm due to a breach of the duty of care owed to you. We will discuss what this duty is in a later section.
Contact our advisors today for further guidance regarding claiming for medication errors in care homes.
There are different reasons why a medication error could take place in a care home. For example:
- A doctor makes an error when writing the prescription for a patient, resulting in the wrong medication being given to the patient.
- Errors made by staff in the administration process that result in the patient receiving the wrong dosage.
- Staff give a patient someone else’s medication due to mislabelling.
Patients in care homes are more likely to be vulnerable and already suffer from different health conditions, which could potentially increase the risk of death caused by the wrong medication.
Call our advisors today for further information on medication error claims.
All medical practitioners owe their patients a duty of care; this is the same for care homes, too, as they have a duty of care to residents. Per this duty of care, they must ensure that all of their patients or residents are receiving the correct standard of care.
If a medication error is caused by a breach of this duty and it goes on to cause the patient or resident harm that could have been avoided, this is known as negligence. When negligence occurs, the liable party can be pursued for compensation.
Furthermore, evidence is crucial for proving negligence occurred when making a claim for medication errors in care homes. Evidence can include:
- Details such as names of staff, medication and times of administered doses.
- Medical records stating any of your symptoms following a medication error.
- Any prescriptions forms or your medical records stating what medication you were prescribed or should be taking.
- 3 years from the date of negligence.
- 3 years from the date it was first reasonably realised that negligence had occurred.
For further information on the evidence needed and time limits for pursuing a negligence claim, call our advisors today.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) website contains information on when you should report medication-related incidents. They state they must be informed if a medication error has caused:
- A death.
- Abuse or an allegation of abuse.
- An injury.
- An incident that was reported to or investigated by the police.
Additionally, family members of patients in care homes should be informed on how they can report safety concerns. Policies in care homes should inform you:
- How to handle referrals and complaints.
- If the CQC need to or has been informed of the medication error.
- Which medicines should be reported under local safeguarding processes.
If you’re unsure about how to report medication errors in care homes and how to make a claim, why not give us a call? Our advisors are available to help at any time that suits you.
When pursuing a medication error claim, you could claim for general and special damages. General damages aim to provide you with compensation for any of the physical damage, illness and/or mental harm you suffered. However, you must be able to provide evidence of this harm for a successful claim, such as your medical records.
The table below shows compensation brackets for general damages that are displayed in the 16th edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). Solicitors often use the JCG to help them value claims. Please only use this table as a guideline, as how much you could receive in compensation will be dependent on your specific claim.
|(a) Permanent damage to both kidneys. Or both kidneys are lost.
|£169,400 to £210,400
|(b) The injured person will be at significant risk of developing urinary tract infections and other loss of natural kidney function.
|Up to £63,980
|(c) Damage or loss of one kidney.
|£30,770 to £44,880
|(a) Cases include complete loss of urinary and bowel function alongside further medical complications.
|Up to £184,200
|(b) There may be a dependency on a colostomy due to the total loss of the bowel's natural function.
|Up to £150,110
|Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury
|Severe - toxicosis that requires hospital admission and leaves the claimants with long term complications.
|£38,430 to £52,500
|Illness/Damage Resulting from Non-traumatic Injury
|Serious but short-lived poisoning with symptoms such as diarrhoea, and vomiting.
|£9,540 to £19,200
|(a) Loss of spleen causes damage to the immune system which also causes the risk of contracting an internal infection.
|£20,800 to £26,290
Additionally, special damages aim to provide you with compensation for the financial losses you have suffered due to being harmed. These financial losses can include travel expenses, paying for private medical care or any adaptations. Again, you will need to provide evidence of this suffering, such as invoices, receipts and bank statements.
Contact our advisors today for further guidance regarding claiming compensation for medication errors in care homes.
An experienced solicitor from our panel may be able to help you with your negligence claim by taking on your case through a No Win No Fee Agreement. With this type of legal agreement, you don’t need to pay your solicitor anything to start or during your claim.
In the event of a successful claim, your solicitor will take a success fee from your compensation. This amount is legally capped. However, if your claim is unsuccessful, you’re not required to pay anything to your solicitor for their services.
It is important to remember that there are various different types of No Win No Fee agreements, one of them being a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Your particular agreement may be referred to as a CFA as opposed to a No Win No Fee.
Additionally, if you’d like to hear more about claiming for medication errors in care homes, you can contact our advisors. Our friendly team is available 24/7 to offer you free legal advice regarding your claim.
Speak with our advisors today:
You can see more of our guides here:
- £25,000 Compensation Payout For The Wrong Medication
- How To Claim Compensation For Negligent First Aid? A Complete Guide To First Aid Negligence Claims
- Dispensing Medication Errors – Could I Make A Compensation Claim?
The following links may be useful to you:
- General Medical Council – The professional duty of candour.
- NHS Resolution – Annual report and accounts 2020/21.
- Age UK – Problems with a care home.
Call our advisors today for more information about claiming for medication errors in care homes.