Every now and again, somebody phones to ask, “Can I claim for a surgical site infection?” The answer is that yes, you can—provided a few basic conditions are met. Firstly, it must have happened within the past three years. Secondly, you must have been treated by a doctor for the resulting infection (which can get very nasty, so this is always a good idea anyway). Thirdly, it must have been caused by somebody else’s negligence. If you were given proper instructions on caring for your wound and you didn’t follow them, or if you simply got unlucky, there’s nothing the law can do to help you.
How surgical site infections develop
There are two main ways that surgical site infections can develop. The first is when the surgery itself isn’t adequately hygienic or something is left in the wound that shouldn’t be there. The second is when the wound doesn’t receive proper aftercare. Whilst you remain in hospital, it is normally nurses who are responsible for your aftercare, including cleaning and dressing your wound. This doesn’t mean that the only way for you to get compensation is to take money from a nurse. Any payout will normally come out of the hospital’s insurance cover.
On being discharged from hospital, you should be given clear instructions on how to look after your wound by somebody who makes sure you understand them. If this does not happen, you may be able to claim compensation.
Most people don’t know much about compensation law before finding themselves in a situation like this—why would they? That’s where Accident Advice Helpline comes in really useful. Our lines are open 24/7 and our highly trained staff are happy to answer questions about this area of law, free of charge. There’s no obligation to make a claim with us—we’re just here to help you understand your options.
In order to take on a hospital you’ll need a highly capable medical negligence solicitor on your side. Access to representation like this has traditionally been expensive, effectively meaning many people couldn’t afford justice, but at Accident Advice Helpline we use a no win, no fee system, meaning you don’t need to have any money at all to start a claim. If we lose the case, we won’t ask for a penny from you.
In addition to this, we can find you an expert solicitor much more quickly than other organisations because of our nationwide reach. If nobody is available in your local area, we’ll match you up with somebody further afield and arrange for you to conduct all your business by phone, so you don’t need to worry about travel. A courier can usually transfer any documents that need to be signed.
Taking on a big organisation like this can feel daunting, but we’ll put in the hard work so that you don’t need to worry about it day to day. We’ll do our best to ensure that you get the money you deserve.
To discuss your claim with a member of our expert team dial 0800 689 0500 now.
Date Published: January 3, 2014
Author: David Brown