Any successful claim for compensation calls for two basic requirements and medical negligence claims are no different. The first requirement is a demonstration that you or the person on whose behalf you are claiming has indeed suffered an illness or injury. In the case of a misdiagnosis, this will generally involve seeking medical help and getting an expert opinion.
The second part of the claim will be establishing that someone was negligent in not spotting the illness in the first place. This will mean showing that the symptoms, at the time, were such that a medical practitioner might reasonably have been expected to spot and correctly identify them.
Incidents of meningitis are thankfully relatively low. In 2017/18, there were 755 confirmed cases of bacterial meningitis in England.
If you’ve been left injured or ill following medical treatment then it’s only right that you should be able to seek compensation. Being ill is stressful enough at the best of times, and the knowledge that the medical practitioners in whom you placed your trust have let you down can be deeply distressing.
The main difference between claims for medical negligence and other types of claim lies mainly in the complexity of the circumstances. A car shunting into yours from behind is relatively simple when compared to demonstrating that an illness such as meningitis has been misdiagnosed. An expert personal injuries lawyer will know exactly how to go about building such a case, however, including accessing the expert witness testimony which may be required if the case reaches court.
The medical negligence cases which make the headlines tend to be those involving large NHS trusts, but the truth is that anyone offering medical treatment has a duty to meet certain standards and should expect to be sued if they fail to do so. Therefore, you have every right to bring a claim against even the smallest clinic or practice if they fail to spot that someone is suffering from an illness such as meningitis. The results of such a mistake could be devastating, up to and including long term disability or even death and you really shouldn’t be expected to just accept the circumstances and move on.
Clearly, if you’re ill in any way then the thing you’ll be hoping for above all else is that you will make a full recovery. Even if you do, however, the fact that you suffered needlessly should still be recognised via compensation. Had a correct diagnosis been made than your recovery may well have been quicker and your pain and distress less, and this will be reflected in any compensation you receive.
If you feel you may have been let down in this way then call free on 0800 234 6438 and discuss your details with a trained legal adviser. They’ll listen to you and offer advice free of charge. If there’s a good chance you could be eligible for compensation then they’ll put your in touch with an expert solicitor, who – with your permission – will set about building the strongest possible case on a no win no fee basis.
We know that making a claim can feel daunting. We're here to help with that. When you submit your details, you'll be in safe hands. Our partner is National Accident Helpline – the UK's leading personal injury service. Their friendly legal services advisers will call you to talk about your claim and give you free, no-obligation advice. National Accident Helpline may pay us a marketing fee if you decide to proceed with your case.
If you win your case, your solicitor's success fee will be taken from the compensation you are awarded - up to a maximum of 25%. Your solicitor will discuss any fees before starting your case.