Clinical Negligence

What action can I take?

Formal Complaints

It may be appropriate to take an informal route to obtaining some answers from the hospital, doctor, dentist, nurse or other healthcare professional. The use of formal complaints procedures provide a useful way of gathering further information which can help you make any decision as to what to do next.

You should expect a full explanation of what has gone wrong and why together with an apology, where appropriate. You should ask for assurances that any problems that might affect other patients have been addressed. Sometimes this is achieved informally but other times it is not.

Legal Action

It could be that you are able to seek compensation by taking legal action if it appears there is clinical negligence involved. However, the legal process is only concerned with establishing what compensation, if any, you should be entitled to. Whilst this information sheet explains this process to some extent, you will probably find it helpful to discuss the possibilities of this with one of the Advice and Information Workers.

To succeed in a claim for compensation for clinical negligence, you have to prove both that the care was negligent (breach of duty) and that, but for the identified negligence, the outcome would have been different (causation).

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