A Guide To Claiming Compensation For Misdiagnosis Of Cancer – How To Claim For Negligence?

misdiagnosis of cancer

Misdiagnosis of cancer

Cancer is a time-bound disease. This means that cancer spreads over time. The longer the cancer is left the more difficult it becomes to treat and the more likely it is to spread to other organs. Although medical staff usually do a good, conscientious job, there are times when a doctor, oncologist or other medical practitioner fails to diagnose cancer correctly. This could happen because a doctor dismisses a possible symptom of cancer, does not examine a patient properly, fails to refer a patient to a specialist department at a hospital for a second opinion or tests, or a cancer specialist fails to read the patient’s test results correctly. If you have experienced a cancer misdiagnosis case, it can make your cancer harder to treat, or even more mean that cancer has got to the stage where it is untreatable.

If you have experienced the misdiagnosis of cancer, which led you your condition worsening, or you have lost a loved one because their cancer was misdiagnosed you could be entitled to claim tens or even hundreds of thousands of pounds in cancer misdiagnosis compensation. Trust Accident Claims UK, a top personal injury solicitor’s firm, to help you claim cancer misdiagnosis compensation or compensation for delayed cancer diagnosis.

Contact us today by calling 0800 073 8801.

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A Guide To Claiming Compensation For The Misdiagnosis Of Cancer

All medical professionals and institutions have a legal duty of care towards their patients, meaning that they are expected to abide by certain standards. If a patient receives substandard care from a medical practitioner, or because of an institutional failure, which causes an avoidable accident leading to the patient becoming ill, injured or a medical condition worsening this is known as medical negligence and the patient is entitled to claim medical negligence compensation. Cancer misdiagnosis is a very serious form of medical negligence compensation because as we have stated, a timely diagnosis can make the difference between the patient surviving the disease or not.

If you can prove you have been a victim cancer misdiagnosis and you can prove that it did worsen your condition, you could be legally entitled to make a compensation claim for cancer misdiagnosis compensation. If your next of kin died because a doctor misdiagnosed their cancer then you may be entitled to claim compensation on their behalf. Cancer misdiagnosis compensation amounts can be worth tens or in some cases hundreds of thousands of pounds. Trust Accident Claims UK to help you claim your cancer misdiagnosis payout. We can provide you with a specialist solicitor will fight relentlessly to win your claim and ensure that you are awarded the maximum amount of compensation that you are entitled to. We offer a free telephone consultation to potential claimants so call us today to see how much compensation you could claim for the misdiagnosis of cancer.

Medical Treatment And Your Doctor’s Duty of Care

As we have said, doctors and all other medical practitioners are bound by a duty of care towards any patient they treat. This means that if a medical practitioner delivers substandard care towards the patient, which directly harms them in any way, they are legally liable for the injuries caused. The attending physician can also be held liable if a member of staff who works below them, such as a student doctor, intern or nurse, delivers substandard care. In some cases of medical negligence liability is established as “vicarious liability”. This means that the institution where the patient is treated, such as a GP’s surgery or hospital is also partly or entirely at fault. Usually, a solicitor will assess the circumstances of your cancer misdiagnosis case and will determine who is liable for the medical negligence you suffered.

What Is Medical Misdiagnosis Or Incorrect Diagnosis?

If a qualified doctor provides their patient with a wrong diagnosis, this is defined as a medical misdiagnosis. This can include giving a patient “the all clear” when there is actually something wrong. Late diagnosis is when the correct diagnosis of an injury, disease or medical condition is delayed, usually because a doctor dismisses the symptoms or gives a misdiagnosis at first. In cases of the misdiagnosis of cancer, this could mean that the victim has to opt for a more radical form of treatment for their cancer, or worse results in them dying from cancer where they might have lived if their cancer had been caught and treated earlier.

To make a successful cancer misdiagnosis claim for compensation your solicitor will have to find evidence of the following:

  1. That you had a patient-doctor relationship with the Defendant
  2. That the Defendant (doctor or medical institution in question) was negligent. This means that they provided care below expected standards.
  3. That this negligent resulted in you, the Claimant becoming harmed. If you are claiming compensation for your deceased next of kin then you will have to be able to provide evidence that the misdiagnosis harmed them and led to their untimely death.

These are errors that your doctor or oncologist could have made, which could have led to a misdiagnosis of cancer:

  • Missed diagnosis: your doctor gives you an “all clear” when you are actually suffering from cancer.
  • Diagnostic test errors: A radiology clinic or laboratory gives the doctor an inaccurate test report. This may be caused by a number of reasons, including human error, or faulty equipment. This may be judged to be a case of “vicarious negligence” where the lab or clinic that is deemed to be at fault, not the doctor.
  • Delayed diagnosis: negligence causes the cancer diagnosis to be made accurately, but later than need be.
  • Failure to diagnose complications or related diseases: This is when a doctor diagnoses an illness correctly but overlooks, or incorrectly diagnoses other related diseases, which cause the patient harm. In some cases, the related disease may be the cancer, which is more dangerous than the primary disease.

Your medical negligence solicitor will be able to help you collect evidence to support your cancer misdiagnosis claim.

NHS Cancer Misdiagnosis Statistics

From 2006 to 2014 the NHS paid over £44.6 million pounds to 681 current or former cancer patients, or the families of now deceased cancer patients. The Claimants had either suffered a misdiagnosis of cancer, or a delayed diagnosis which had worsened their condition as a result. This meant that they had to opt for more radical treatment, which is more painful, costly and risky than the treatment available to cancer patients at the early stages of the disease, or worse, it had led to them dying unnecessarily. At the same time that this was reported, Cancer Research UK cited that nearly 52,000 patients a year were at risk of having their chances of surviving cancer lowered because of delays in catching the disease. A study by charity The National Patient Standard Agency found that patients involved in cases of urological, skin, gynecological and breast cancer are most likely to experience a delay in getting a cancer diagnosis, of one to three months. The same study sound that in one-third of these cases, the cancer sufferer’s condition was worsened because of the delayed diagnosis.

If you have experienced a misdiagnosis of cancer, which led to your condition worsening, you may be legally entitled to claim a cancer misdiagnosis compensation payout. Call Accident Claims UK, to be provided with the right specialist solicitor to handle your claim.

Making A Claim For A Cancer Misdiagnosis

You can make a misdiagnosed cancer claim, or a claim for late diagnosis if your ordeal worsened your existing condition, or you lost a close next of kin relative due to a misdiagnosis of cancer. Potentially, there are multiple cases each day where a misdiagnosis of cancer claim can be made. For example, 150 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed on average each day in the UK. 10% of breast cancer cases involve a late diagnosis, in some cases this occurs because the symptoms of breast cancer were initially misdiagnosed. Hiring an expert solicitor from Accident Claims UK to represent you means that they will collect evidence to support your case and work tirelessly to win you the cancer misdiagnosis settlement or compensation for delayed cancer diagnosis that you are entitled to.

What Are The Causes Of Cancer Misdiagnosis

First of all, we will look at the most common reasons for cancer misdiagnosis.

  1. Medical errors: This can include a patient being prescribed the wrong medication, the wrong quantity of medicine or the wrong treatment.
  2. Delayed care: The NHS aims to have every case of cancer diagnosed and to have begun treatment within 2 months of the patient coming forward with symptoms of cancer. Unfortunately, treatment can be delayed, especially if potential cancer symptoms are not treated with the utmost urgency.
  3. Misdiagnosis: Misdiagnosis can happen if medical practitioners make an error, which is usually unintentional. Common mistakes that can lead to a cancer misdiagnosis include: failing to refer a patient to a specialist, not performing a biopsy on a tumour, or failed to implement appropriate MRI or CT scans.

Accident Claims UK understands that NHS staff are very overworked and are often short of time, which can lead to medical mistakes, or essential steps in the diagnostic process being overlooked. Unfortunately overworking staff this way is counterproductive and leads to the NHS having to pay millions of pounds in cancer misdiagnosis payouts each year.

Clients often ask us if there are different types of cancer misdiagnosis claims. The answer is yes, making a successful claim depends on establishing liability for the accident. There are four types of liability which can be established:

  • Contributory negligence: The victim is personally responsible for their injuries. In the case of late diagnosis of cancer, they ignored the symptoms and failed to seek the help of a doctor until it was too late. In these cases, the patient cannot receive any compensation.
  • Comparative negligence: The victim and the medical practitioner are both partially to blame for the cancer misdiagnosis or late diagnosis. This is taken into consideration when the amount of compensation to be awarded is worked out.
  • Vicarious liability: Liability for the patient’s injuries rests with the hospital that employed the doctor, or another institution such as a lab which returned faulty test results.
  • Gross negligence: Gross negligence is when liability rests completely with the medical practitioner. They either neglected their duty of care or made a gross error. Under these cases, the defendant’s medical registration or license may be revoked.

What Can Be The Long-Term Effects Of A Cancer Misdiagnosis?

The long-term effects of cancer misdiagnosis mean that the victim is likely to have their medical condition worsened. This could mean that they may have to resort to more radical and invasive methods of treatment for their cancer such as chemotherapy, rather than an operation, which will be more painful, upsetting and detrimental to their quality of life. In more extreme cases a late diagnosis of cancer may mean that by the time it has been diagnosed, cancer has progressed too far to be treated and the patient dies unnecessarily. This is, of course, one of the most tragic results of the misdiagnosis of cancer.

Making A Compensation Claim Against The NHS

If you have experienced a diagnostic error which led to the misdiagnosis of your cancer, or a late diagnosis in an NHS run medical institution, there are some steps you will need to take to make a compensation claim against the NHS. firstly be sure to report your complaint to NHS England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland and also report your complaint to your local Healthwatch. You should also report the medical practitioner to their regulatory body and complain to the Quality Care Commission. Make sure you keep a record of every complaint you make,

If you are looking to make a misdiagnosed cancer claim, or a claim for late cancer diagnosis against the NHS, please consider taking advantage of Accident Claim UK’s free legal consultation. We will let you know whether or not you have a legitimate claim, estimate what cancer misdiagnosis compensation amount you could claim, and find the right solicitor to handle your claim. Call us today for your free consultation.

Late Diagnosis And Delayed Cancer Treatment

As we have established, cancer is a time-bound disease. The earlier it is caught, the easier it is to treat and the less likely it is to have spread to other organs. Unfortunately, if the victim experiences the late diagnosis of cancer, it may be more difficult to treat, or in very tragic cases may lead to an untimely and unnecessary death. If you or your now deceased next of kin was the victim of late diagnosis, you could be entitled to receive compensation for delayed cancer diagnosis. To receive this, you will have to be able to prove that the late diagnosis happened because of negligence on the part of the medical practitioners, which caused unnecessary delays. This could include a doctor sending you away if you come to them with symptoms of cancer. Your specialist personal injury solicitor will put together a case for you.

Cancer Negligence Compensation Claim Time Limits

According to the statute of limitations in the UK, if you suffer from the misdiagnosis of cancer, you will have three years in which to claim cancer misdiagnosis compensation, from the time you were misdiagnosed or realised that you had been misdiagnosed. If you experienced cancer misdiagnosis as a child you will have three years in which to make a cancer misdiagnosis claim from your 18th birthday onwards. Of course, cancer treatment, or suffering bereavement due to a loved one dying of cancer, can be a long and traumatic process which could delay a compensation claim being made. Therefore exceptions to the time limit on claiming compensation for the misdiagnosis of cancer can sometimes be made.

What Should You Do If Your Cancer Was Misdiagnosed?

If you suffered from a misdiagnosis of cancer, it goes without saying that you should seek the appropriate medical care. You should ask to be referred to a different physician and a specialist immediately to be provided with the appropriate treatment at the earliest possible instance. To support your cancer misdiagnosis case you can also take the following steps to collect evidence. Please note that the advice below is legal advice not medical advice.

  • Write down your experiences: It is easy to forget what happened to you after a difficult experience. At the earliest opportunity, it pays to sit down and write everything you remember about the medical negligence incident you have experienced.
  • Obtain a medical report: After seeking immediate medical treatment you can also obtain a medical report. Your medical report will document your injuries, the doctor’s opinion on the sort of cancer treatment you will require and your chances of survival.
  • Collect important information: To support your claim it is a good idea to collect any important information you may have on the misdiagnosis of cancer. This can include the place where you were treated and medical staff that witnessed your misdiagnosis of cancer.
  • Record your expenses: If your cancer misdiagnosis claim is successful, you will be able to claim any expenses your injuries cost you back as special damages. This can include medical expenses, transport expenses, at home care expenses and the cost of any income you lost as a result of your injuries if you were unable to work whilst receiving cancer treatment. Keeping a record of your expenses will also serve as evidence towards your claim.

Cancer Misdiagnosis Compensation Calculator

If you successfully sue for cancer misdiagnosis compensation you can claim general damages for your injuries, which will compensate you for the pain and suffering you endure because of your injuries. This will be the largest part of your cancer misdiagnosis settlement. You will also receive a smaller cancer misdiagnosis payout, which will be your special damages. The purpose of special damages is to compensate you for any out of pocket expenses caused by your cancer misdiagnoses, such as medical expenses, travel expenses, at home care and loss of income if you had to take time off work. Clients often ask us cancer misdiagnosis compensation amount they can claim for if they have experienced a cancer misdiagnosis. Cancer misdiagnosis settlements tend to be a large sum, because of the risk to life that has been created by the doctor’s medical negligence. You can use our cancer misdiagnosis compensation calculator to receive an automatically generated estimation of how large your cancer misdiagnosis payout could be.

InjurySeverityAverage settlement awardedNotes:
Head injuriesSevere£185,000 - £275,000Requiring constant care and with a high degree of a reduced quality of life.
Head injuriesModerate£145,000 - £175,000Permanently disabled after the injury
Head injuriesMinor£1,500 - £9,500Resulting in only minor injuries
Ear injuriesSerious£4,750 - £35,000May also include tinnitus.
Eye injuriesSeriousPotentially as much as £260,000Loss of sight in one or both eyes
Neck injuriesSevere£15,000 - £95,500Loss of function in the neck
Neck injuriesModerate£4,500 - £16,550Restricted function in the neck
Neck injuriesMinor£1,000 - £4,500Fully recovered from quickly.
Foot injuriesSerious£112,000 - £135,000Injuries up to amputation.
Foot injuriesModerate£55,000 - £75,000Not as serious as the above category, but may lead to seriously reduced function.

Of course, the cancer misdiagnosis compensation amounts generated by the cancer misdiagnosis compensation calculator are calculated automatically so don’t take your individual circumstances into account. For a more accurate estimation of how much compensation you could be awarded, call Accident Claims UK for your telephone consultation today.

No Win, No Fee Compensation For The Misdiagnosis Of Cancer

At Accident Claims UK we offer all of our clients the option to make a no win no fee compensation claim. What does this mean exactly? A no win no fee service means that you don’t have to pay an upfront fee, or any ongoing fee to your solicitor. Instead, you only pay if you win your compensation claim, meaning that there is no financial risk to you. You will receive the same great service as any other compensation claimants, but your solicitor’s fees will come out of your cancer misdiagnosis payout meaning that no win no fee is the more affordable option for many.

To inquire about making a no win no fee cancer misdiagnosis claim, call Accident Claims UK today for your free consultation. If you have a legitimate claim, we will partner you with an excellent solicitor, who will proceed with your claim right away.

Why Choose To Work With Accident Claims UK?

Accident Claims UK is a well respected personal injury solicitor’s firm that specialises in medical negligence cases, such as the misdiagnosis of cancer. We only work with experienced solicitors (some of our solicitors have been practising law for three decades) that have a lot of integrity. If you think you have experienced the misdiagnosis of cancer, call us today for your free legal consultation. We will let you know how much compensation you could claim, and will provide you with the right solicitor to handle your claim who will proceed with your cancer misdiagnosis case every day.

Helpful Resources

How To Claim Compensation For Medical Negligence?

Find out how you can make a claim and get free legal advice from Accident Claims UK.

A Citizens Advice Guide to taking legal action against the NHS
Further information about taking legal action against the NHS as a liable party.

An NHS Guide To Cancer
The NHS guide to cancer with further information and resources on this disease.