CAN I CLAIM? - MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
To succeed with a medical negligence compensation claim in Scotland, it is usually necessary to show that:-
- the medical practitioner’s conduct fell below that of a reasonable medical practitioner in those circumstances
- someone suffered harm
- that harm was caused by the conduct in question – if the harm or injury would have happened anyway, there will be no right to compensation
The first and third legs of this test can be difficult to prove, particularly in circumstances where the medical practitioner has exercised professional judgement in taking a decision. In that case, it won’t be enough to prove that some other medical practitioners would have made a different decision. Instead, it needs to be shown that no reasonable practitioner exercising ordinary clinical skills in the particular circumstances would have taken that decision.
Partly because of the difficulty in overcoming this test, partly because of the often complex and time-consuming nature of medical negligence claims in Scotland but mostly because of the different rules that apply to the recoverability of fees and other expenses under Scottish law, solicitors in Scotland are seldom prepared to take medical negligence compensation claims forward under a no win no fee arrangement. That being so, medical negligence claims usually need to be paid for using one of the other funding arrangements available.
That, in turn, has led to a significant difference between how members of the public in Scotland are protected compared to members of the public in England. It has been reported that, per head of population, for every £5 the NHS in England spends in settling compensation claims for medical negligence, the NHS in Scotland spends less than £1. It’s unlikely that there is a material difference between the competence of English and Scottish medical practitioners so these numbers suggest that the Scottish public is not getting nearly enough of the compensation it is entitled to.
If you’re unsure whether you may have a valid medical negligence compensation claim in Scotland, call us now on 0333 900 0333 to discuss how we can help or simply fill in the CALL ME box and we’ll ring you. Alternatively, you can start your medical negligence claim in Scotland immediately by answering a few simple questions on the CLAIM NOW page and we’ll do the rest.
Remember – If you’ve been injured in Scotland, your medical negligence compensation claim is best dealt with by Scottish specialists and you won’t pay a penny for our help, whatever happens.