Welcome to this guide that answers the question, “what is clinical negligence in health and social care?” We also look at how clinical negligence can lead to a claim if substandard care is provided and you suffer as a result.
If you have any questions at any point, why not get in touch? Our advisors are available 24/7 to give free legal advice. If you have a valid claim, they could connect you to our solicitors. From there, things can get moving on your claim, and you could take the first step towards compensation.
To get in touch with us today, call 0800 073 8801, fill out our online form or use our Live Chat. Note that we’re accessible 24/7, and you don’t have to pursue a claim just because you talked with us.
Select A Section
- A Guide On How To Claim For Clinical Negligence In Health And Social Care
- What Are Claims For Clinical Negligence In Health And Social Care?
- Proving You Were The Victim Of Clinical Negligence
- How To Claim Or Complain About Social Care Negligence
- How To Claim Or Complain About Healthcare Negligence
- Does The Mental Health Act Affect Your Claim?
- Clinical Negligence In Health And Social Care Compensation Calculator
- Further Damages
- No Win No Fee Claims For Clinical Negligence In Health And Social Care
- Why Choose Us To Help You Claim For Clinical Negligence In Health And Social Care
- Begin Your Claim
- Essential References
- The State Of Social Care In The UK
- FAQs On Negligent Social Services Or Healthcare
Let’s start by answering the question, “what is clinical negligence in health and social care?” When a medical professional provides healthcare that is considered to be below the accepted standard, they’re breaching their duty of care.
A medical professional’s duty of care means they should provide you with an accepted standard of medical care. If this standard falls below what is accepted, and you suffer new or further harm as a result, you could claim.
For a personal injury compensation claim to succeed, you need to show;
- The other party owed you a duty of care
- They breached that duty
- As a consequence, you suffered
You’d need evidence to support your claim too. Find out more below or contact us for further details.
Claims for clinical negligence in health and social care allow a patient to take legal action over substandard medical care that caused them harm. The purpose of a claim is to help put you in the position you were before the incident. You could seek compensation for your pain and suffering as well as for financial losses associated with injuries.
Healthcare relates to the care a medical professional provides in any situation. A GP, surgeon or dentist, for example, owes their patient a duty of care.
Social care relates to medical care too. However, people who receive social care need help with day-to-day living because of illness or disability. A home nurse would be an example of a professional that would assist with social care.
Therefore, a clinical negligence claim could focus on either of these areas. Please call our expert team if you need further insight.
To make a successful claim, it’s imperative that you can produce evidence of clinical negligence and the harm you suffered because of it. Medical professionals generally act with their patient’s best interests in mind. Therefore, a patient that believes they’re a victim of negligence could find it difficult to produce concrete evidence.
The Bolam Test
As part of a medical negligence claim, the Bolam test could be applied. This is where the instance of the medical professional’s care is considered by other similar professionals. They deliver their opinion as to whether the professional acted in an acceptable manner.
Other evidence can include:
- Photographs and CCTV footage
- X-rays, CT scans or other medical images that clearly indicate symptoms that the healthcare professional missed through negligence
- Medical records
- Witness statements
Evidence is crucial to keep in mind when wondering, ‘what is clinical negligence in health and social care?’ Please leave us a message on our live chat service if you have any questions.
Ahead of a social care negligence claim, you could make an official complaint. This can be done in writing directly to the healthcare provider. You would have to consider the issue, who you believe is responsible, and what procedures you must follow. The issue may be resolved satisfactorily for you.
However, if it isn’t, and you can show that you suffered new or further illness or injury due to social care negligence, you could claim.
If you’re not satisfied with the response, you could claim. A solicitor could support you with this. If you’d like to get connected to one, why not call our advisors?
The Mental Health Act 1983 is legislation relating to those with mental health disorders. It covers the rights, treatment and assessment of people with a mental health disorder. People can be detained under this Act if they need urgent treatment and are at risk of harming themselves or others.
If you’re detained under the Mental Health Act and don’t have the mental capacity to make a claim, the time limit for starting one is frozen.
Generally, the time limit to start a medical negligence claim is:
- 3 years from the date you gained knowledge that negligence at least contributed to your injuries or illness; or
- 3 years from the date of the injury or illness
A litigation friend could claim on your behalf if you lack the mental capacity to claim. They’d be able to do so at any point. However, if you recover mental capacity, you’d have 3 years from the date of recovery to claim for yourself. A solicitor could help you in either situation.
Every case is different, so there’s no set amount of how much you can claim. However, there are general figures for injuries and illnesses that you could reasonably use to help you value your potential claim. The Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) provide potential compensation figures for various injuries. Solicitors use this publication to help them when valuing claims.
In the compensation table below, we’ve included figures from the JCG.
|Paraplegia||Severe||£205,580 to £266,740||A state of permanent paralysis that limits body movement.|
|Brain Damage||Moderately Severe||£205,580 to £264,650||Significant disability due to brain damage that requires continuous care.|
|Psychiatric Damage||Severe||£51,460 to £108,620||The ability to cope with life, work and employment will be impacted. The prognosis is very poor.|
|Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)||Moderately Severe||£21,730 to £56,180||Significant harm but there will be some recovery via a professional's help.|
|Mental Anguish||Serious||£4,380||A fear of impending death or a reduction in life expectancy.|
If you can’t see your injuries in the compensation table above, why not get in touch with our advisors?
There are two potential heads of claim: general damages and special damages. General damages compensate you for the physical and mental suffering you endure. If you make a successful claim, you receive general damages.
You could claim special damages too. Special damages relate to financial losses associated with your injuries. It can include:
- Loss of earnings
- Care costs
- Travel expenses (to and from the hospital, for example)
- Medication costs
In order to successfully claim special damages, you’d need to provide evidence. For example, you might use payslips, receipts or bank statements.
You don’t have to claim with the help of a solicitor. However, having one on your side can mean that you get expert legal advice, a professional who is experienced in making claims, and someone to negotiate on your behalf. Under a No Win No Fee agreement, you don’t have to pay the solicitor’s fee unless the claim wins.
You also don’t have to pay
- an upfront solicitor’s fee.
- any ongoing solicitor fees.
If the claim wins, you would pay the solicitor a success fee. However, this is capped by law and is taken from the compensation only after it comes through.
Our solicitors offer their services on a No Win No Fee basis.
Our solicitors could help you make a claim for clinical negligence in health and social care.
- They can bring top-level legal experience and first-class credentials
- We have a track record of success
- Because our solicitors assess your claim beforehand, they’re confident of your chances if they take on your case
- Finally, our service is nationwide, so we can handle claims from anywhere in the country
Get in touch with us to learn more.
Now that we’ve answered, ‘what is clinical negligence in health and social care?’, you may be thinking about claiming. You’re under no obligation to proceed with a claim by talking with us. Nevertheless, we work 24/7 and can answer your initial inquiry. Furthermore, our solicitors could potentially handle your claim. To contact us, simply:
We hope you now have your answer to the question, “what is clinical negligence in health and social care?” However, we recognise that you may still want more information. That’s why we have these extra resources for you to read.
Starting off, there’s our full guide to clinical and medical negligence claims.
Next, we have further details about Accident Claims.
We also have an article on birth injury claims.
Elsewhere, the NHS offers guidance on mental health.
This includes a breakdown of the varying mental health conditions that people suffer from.
Additionally, they recommend their own five steps towards positive mental wellbeing.
According to the NHS’ adult social care report for 2020-21:
- Gross current expenditure by local authorities was £21.2 billion for adult social care.
- This is a £1.6 billion increase from the year before.
- It’s an 8.1% increase in cash terms.
- An increase in 2020-21 government funding to support the adult social care sector during the pandemic influenced these spending figures.
What are the time limits for claiming compensation?
You would generally have three years to start a claim for compensation. However, if you’re under 18 or lack the mental capacity to claim, the time limit would be different. Why not get in touch? Our advisors can let you know how long you could have left to claim.
Could my claim be settled out of court?
Yes. The vast majority of clinical negligence claims don’t make it to court due to out-of-court settlements.
What are settlement negotiations?
This is where your solicitor negotiates with the defendant on a potential payout once the defendant admits liability.
This guide aims to answer the question ‘what is clinical negligence in health and social care?’ If you have a valid claim, why not get in touch for free legal advice?
Guide by MA
Edited by RV