If you sustain an injury in an accident that was not your fault, and have to seek medical attention, you would expect your injury to be treated correctly by the medical professional that you see. Unfortunately this is not always the case. Sometimes doctors (as well as other medical professionals) get it wrong.
For instance, your doctor could diagnose a whiplash injury in Brickendo, when in fact it’s broken bone.
A whiplash injury in Brickendon or a broken bone?
Most of us trust our doctors and are guided by what they tell us. Usually we only see them if we are unwell, pregnant or have an injury of some sort. The whiplash injury in Brickendon and broken bone scenario is just an example of what can go wrong, many other errors can happen, not just made by your doctor, but by:
In fact any medical professional can make a mistake, and if they do it needs highlighting so that someone else does not suffer the same fate as you because they are being negligent.
Many victims would report the situation to the professional body of the practitioner in question, as they always like to be aware of erring members, and this is a good idea.
Your entitlement for medical negligence
Another way to bring it to peoples attention is to make a medical negligence claim against the person or institution in question. Medical negligence comes within the rules of all personal injury claims, which are:
- The incident must have happened within the last three years
- It must have been the fault of someone else
- You must have sustained injuries or illness because of it
In this situation the law says you are due compensation from the guilty party, and in the case of medical negligence claims, most medical professional will be covered by professional indemnity insurance for such eventualities as these.
The 50% rule
As a rule of thumb, you have to prove that there is at least a 50% chance that the treatment you received made you worse, or created a new health problem. This is usually achieved by a report from a specialist in the field of your illness or injury. If that report agrees with the treatment you had, there would be no case to answer to. But if that report says that you should have been treated differently, then you should be paid compensation, not just for the illness or injury created by the error, but also for the way it has impacted on your life.
If you think you may have a medical negligence claim, contact Accident Advice Helpline to discuss it further. Just dial 0800 689 0500 from your land line, or 0333 500 0993 from your mobile.
Date Published: 4th May 2014