If you believe that a doctor’s failure to diagnose a condition or treat you correctly for an illness, there is a chance that you may be eligible to make a medical negligence claim. Before you can successfully claim for injury through medical negligence, however, you will be required to provide sufficient evidence to prove that this was indeed a case of negligence and that there was causation. So with regards to negligence and causation – what’s the difference?
What is negligence?
In essence, negligence is the failure to come up to the required standard of care due to a patient. Also known as a breach of duty of care, this means a doctor or other medical professionals fail to diagnose or treat an individual correctly. For instance, victims of accidents at work may be treated for superficial wounds only, when in fact there were broken bones involved.
Another example of negligence would be if a doctor failed to advise a patient of the risks involved in a necessary operation, or if an illness was not diagnosed correctly. As a rule, this can only be proved by comparing the professional’s actions against the standard set by a body of related professionals/ practitioners. The process of determining whether a doctor has failed this standard is typically referred to as the Bolam Test. It is important to be aware of negligence and causation – what’s the difference?
What is causation?
Having established that there was a breach of duty, or negligence, you will then need to prove that this negligence was either directly or at least partially responsible for your injury/ condition, before you can claim for compensation. This is known as causation and will be easier in some cases than in others.
In a case where a surgeon amputated the wrong limb after a road or work accident, for instance, it would obviously be easy to prove causation. If, on the other hand, you had a mental illness and this was not, or wrongly diagnosed, it would be fairly difficult to prove that this failure lead to further mental distress.
Accident Advice Helpline is a law firm that regularly deals with claims for injury by medical negligence. With an experienced nationwide team of specialist lawyers, the AAH is able to provide you with the necessary information to make a successful injury compensation claim and assist you in every aspect involved in the procedure.
Offering a free-phone number that is available 24/7 and manned by knowledgeable, friendly staff: Accident Advice Helpline’s team will ensure you can discuss your situation confidentially and will receive the compensation you are due in as little time as possible.
Date Published: October 17, 2013
Author: David Brown