WHAT IS MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE *?

WHAT IS MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE *?

What is Medical Negligence *?

Medical negligence * (also known as clinical negligence * or medical malpractice *) comes in many forms and occurs when substandard care is given to a patient, either by action or failure to act, that either worsens their current condition or causes additional injury to them. These injuries are usually avoidable where the medical practitioner adhered to the duty of care and standard of medical practice expected of them.

The term medical negligence claim * refers to scenarios where a patient who has suffered some form of personal injury * as a direct result of an error made by the medical practitioner, pursues legal action against the medical practitioner who treated them.

Medical Practitioners

Here is a list of medical practitioners that have been attributed to medical negligence claims * in the past:

  • GPs
  • Doctors
  • Nurses
  • Lab Technicians
  • Medical consultants
  • Surgeons
  • Plastic surgeons
  • Physiotherapists
  • Opticians
  • Dentists
  • Psychologists
  • Anaesthesiologists
  • Cardiologists
  • Acupuncturists
  • Chiropractors
  • Osteopaths
  • Pharmacists

Types of Medical Negligence *

There are several ways in which Medical Negligence cases * arise. Some of the most common medical negligence claims are:

Misdiagnosis

Once admitted to a hospital or when going to the doctor the first thing that a medical practitioner will do is to diagnose your condition. This will determine your course of treatment and your road to recovery. When a patient is misdiagnosed this can worsen their condition and often, with misdiagnosis cases, the treatment given to them is not addressing the issue. Some common types include:

Where a patient sustains further injury, the medical practitioner may be held liable in a misdiagnosis claim *.

Delayed Diagnosis

Delayed diagnosis is another cause of medical negligence claims * and can be established if you can show that another medical professional would have diagnosed the patient in a timely manner as expected. Delayed diagnosis may allow a condition to progress further unnecessarily and is completely avoidable.

In such cases, the doctor responsible for the delayed diagnosis may be held liable for the injury.

Surgical Error

Error during surgery can occur and often involved further treatment and in cases, further surgery that could have been avoided had the medical professional adhered to the standard of care expected of them. Errors in surgery can happen before during and after the surgery occurred. Some of the most common surgical error claims * have involved:

Medication and Prescription Errors

Medication and prescription errors can lead to further injury or a worsening condition and the doctor/pharmacist that made the error may be held liable for an injury sustained. There are generally 2 different types of prescription errors:

  • Medication combination administration errors

A lot of time taking a medication that is not for you may have no effect, however, if the patient is on other medication the person prescribing the medication needs to be aware of how this medication may react when combined with other forms of medication. In cases where a doctor fails to take this into account and the patient has a bad reaction causes injury, they may be held liable.

  • Incorrect dosage or wrong prescription

Where a medical professional misjudges the dosage, this may lead to an injury. The same can be said for times where a doctor prescribes the wrong medication entirely and the patient’s condition worsens.

Incorrect dosage or wrong prescription may also occur where a pharmacist gives somebody an incorrect prescription, despite the doctor having prescribes the correct dosage and medication. In these cases, the pharmacist may be held liable for any injuries.

  • Medical Allery

It is the duty of the medical professional to check medical history to ensure that the patient is not allergic to the medication they subscribe. At times where, medical history is not checked, and the patient has a reaction leading to an injury, they may be held liable.

What is Duty of Care

There is a duty of care expected from medical professional towards their patients. In general, the duty of care means that the medical professional should not act in such a way that will worsen the condition of the patient or cause them further injury.

A doctor or any other medical professional has a duty of care towards their patients. When a patient claims medical negligence *, one of the first things established will be whether there was a breach in the doctor’s duty of care, i.e. did they deliver substandard medical care to the patient.

The way in which medical negligence may be proven in that case is to have the case assessed by an independent third party medical practitioner in the same field of medicine as the accused.

For example, in a misdiagnosis case, if the third party medical professional reverts to say that they could have diagnosed and treated the patient immediately based on their symptoms and prevented their further injuries, this is the starting point to proving medical negligence occurred.

Medical negligence * is a complex part of Irish Law, your solicitor will be best placed to help you in moving forward.

Making a Claim

The process on how to make a claim for medical negligence * in Ireland is different when compared to other personal injury claims. Medical negligence claims * are not always a straightforward situation to prove.  It must be determined with medical negligence * that a medical practitioner acted in a negligent manner which directly caused or contributed to an injury.

Medical negligence claims are complicated in nature and when making a claim all details of events and injury that have taken place must be provided in a clear and correct manner. Here are some important steps to take when proceeding with your claim.

  • Record the date and time of the incident and the details of the type of care received.
  • Retain any medical records relating to the incident
  • Take a photo of any visible injuries sustained as a result
  • Contact a medical negligence solicitor

Your solicitor can then guide you through the next steps to ensure that the claim procedure runs as smoothly as possible for you.

After discussing your situation with your solicitor, your solicitor will request access to your medical records. An independent medical expert in the field of interest will then review your case. This determines whether you have been a subject of inadequate medical care at the hands of a medical professional. Your injuries or illness will also be assessed to determine if they could have been avoided.

Time Limits

It is important to understand that medical negligence cases * require certain time frames. This time frame is known as the statute of limitations. Essentially the statute of limitation refers to the time of which you can bring a claim forward for medical negligence *.  For medical neglect claims * the injured party has two years less a day after the date of knowledge to make a claim. The date of knowledge is the date that a person made the connection that their illness or injuries were a result of medical negligence *.

Where children are involved, a child is unable to make a claim themselves and cannot do so until they reach 18 years old. However, following the incident, a parent or guardian may bring a claim forward on their behalf before their 18th birthday. Once the case is settled, any award given to the child will be held and released to the child when they turn 18 years old.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR CASE

With 30 years’ experience as specialist medical negligence solicitors *, Tracey Solicitors, ensure not to overwhelm you with legal jargon and can provide you with legal advice and guidance with your best interest at heart, in a language that you can understand.

For a confidential discussion, phone our medical negligence team * on 01 649 9900 or email ask@traceysolicitors.ie to tell us about your case and we can call you back.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR CASE

contact no win no fee solicitors

016499900

or email ask@traceysolicitors.ie to tell us about your case and we can call you back

TELL US ABOUR YOUR CASE

Medical Negligence Claims * – Useful Information

 

What is a Medical Negligence *?

Medical negligence * (also known as clinical negligence *) is a term used to describe situations where a patient suffers a personal injury * as a result of an error made by the medical practitioner.

There are many different scenarios that could lead to a claim, most common of which are:

Each scenario and case will be different, therefore, it is important that you contact a medical negligence solicitor * as soon as possible after the accident to discuss your case.

How do I start a claim for medical negligence *?

Medical Negligence is a complicated topic in Irish Law and is treated differently to other personal injury claims *. Therefore, it is important that you speak to a medical negligence solicitor * if you believe you have been subject to substandard care from a medical professional. Your solicitor will help you in gathering all the information needed to make your claim.

How long do I have to make a medical negligence claim *?

It is important to understand that medical negligence cases * require certain time frames. This time frame is known as the statute of limitations. Essentially the statute of limitation refers to the time of which you can bring a claim forward for medical negligence *.  For medical neglect claims * the injured party has two years less a day after the date of knowledge to make a claim. The date of knowledge is the date that a person made the connection that their illness or injuries were a result of medical negligence *.

How is compensation calculated?

A compensation amount is calculated by taking into account the following aspects:

  • Loss of wages, if absent from work due to injury
  • Future loss of earnings, if absent from work for a long period of time
  • Medical expenses resulting from the injury
  • Future medical expenses resulting from the injury
  • Out of pocket expenses

Speak with your solicitor for more clarity on your specific case.

“I really enjoyed Tracey Solicitors service. They really helped me in solving my case without any complications in a very fast way. I would really recommend Tracey Solicitors to everyone who is looking for a great solicitor.”

Personal Injury Client *

Client Story – Carol, Medical Negligence *

Incident: The client gave birth to her daughter on the 24/08/2016 and was sent home from the hospital. She had an uncomfortable feeling of pressure all that day and when she woke up that night to use the bathroom she got a strong pain and an urge to push. She could see a foreign object coming from her vagina. She initially thought she was haemorrhaging. She called her mother to come and help her after retrieving the object that had at this stage fallen out of her. They had no idea what the object was. She called the hospital and they advised her to go in immediately and to bring her baby too. After spending a night in the hospital they confirmed that it was a medical tampon which had been left inside her since the birth of her daughter that had caused the aforementioned events to take place. She had suffered a first degree tear and the medical tampon had been used to stem blood flow from the uterus and maintain operative field visibility. She was given antibiotics and sent home. The advice was to go back in a week and when she returned she was told she was given the wrong antibiotics and would need to be put on another course of antibiotics. Carol was concerned about the fact that she could have potentially suffered infection within the uterine cavity or more severely Toxic Shock Syndrome.

Case progression: Proceedings were instigated on the 11/06/2018.

Settlement: The case was settled in the Circuit Court on the 26/06/2018. The case was settled in our favour as we had argued the point that this substandard treatment in terms of the medical tampon retention during the course of the repair was a never event.

Client Story – Carol, Medical Negligence *

Incident: The client gave birth to her daughter on the 24/08/2016 and was sent home from the hospital. She had an uncomfortable feeling of pressure all that day and when she woke up that night to use the bathroom she got a strong pain and an urge to push. She could see a foreign object coming from her vagina. She initially thought she was haemorrhaging. She called her mother to come and help her after retrieving the object that had at this stage fallen out of her. They had no idea what the object was. She called the hospital and they advised her to go in immediately and to bring her baby too. After spending a night in the hospital they confirmed that it was a medical tampon which had been left inside her since the birth of her daughter that had caused the aforementioned events to take place. She had suffered a first degree tear and the medical tampon had been used to stem blood flow from the uterus and maintain operative field visibility. She was given antibiotics and sent home. The advice was to go back in a week and when she returned she was told she was given the wrong antibiotics and would need to be put on another course of antibiotics. Carol was concerned about the fact that she could have potentially suffered infection within the uterine cavity or more severely Toxic Shock Syndrome.

Case progression: Proceedings were instigated on the 11/06/2018.

Settlement: The case was settled in the Circuit Court on the 26/06/2018. The case was settled in our favour as we had argued the point that this substandard treatment in terms of the medical tampon retention during the course of the repair was a never event.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How can I prove Medical Negligence *?

To prove medical negligence *, you must be able to show that a Doctor-Patient Relationship existed and show that the medical professional that treated you was negligence. Your solicitor will arrange for an independent third party medical expert to assess your case and determine whether negligence was the cause…

READ MORE

How long do I have to make a claim?

The general rule for personal injury claims is that a person has 2 years less one day following the date of knowledge that they were injured to make their claim. This is outlined in the statute of limitations…

READ MORE

How long does a medical negligence * claim take?

Medical Negligence * is a complex aspect of Irish Law, and the length of time it takes for your medical negligence claim * to settle will be heavily dependent on the type of negligence that occurred, and the types of injuries sustained. It is impossible to answer this questions here, that is why you need to speak with medical negligence solicitor to discuss your claim…

READ MORE

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How can I prove Medical Negligence *?

To prove medical negligence, you must be able to show that a Doctor-Patient Relationship existed and show that the medical professional that treated you was negligence. Your solicitor will arrange for an independent third party medical expert to assess your case and determine whether negligence was the cause…

READ MORE

How long does a medical negligence * claim take?

Medical Negligence * is a complex aspect of Irish Law, and the length of time it takes for your medical negligence claim * to settle will be heavily dependent on the type of negligence that occurred, and the types of injuries sustained. It is impossible to answer this questions here, that is why you need to speak with medical negligence solicitor to discuss your claim…

READ MORE

How much time do I have to make my Medical Negligence * Claim?

The general rule for personal injury claims * is that a person can make a claim only in the first two years following the date of an accident or injury or from, what is referred to as, the date of knowledge, i.e. the date that they become aware of an injury or illness caused by a third party. This time limit is known as the statute of limitations…

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