Medical Negligence Claim*

If you have been injured due to Medical Negligence, Kieran Cleary – Solicitor has many years experience in the High Court in Medical Negligence claims* and Personal Injury claims*.

We have a successful track record for Medical Negligence actions in the High Court.

If you have been injured to to Medical Negligence we will work with you to establish if you have a case. We will collaborate with you to seek to address the unanswered questions and issues.

Personal Injuries * In contentious business, a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.

What is Medical Negligence

Medical Negligence involves an action made by a medical professional that resulted in an avoidable injury to a patient.

Medical Negligence can also involve an omission to do something and consequently an injury has resulted or an existing condition has deteriorated.

A person pursuing a medical negligence action needs to establish a duty of care exists between the parties involved, that poor medical care was carried out and this in turn caused the injury or loss.

The injured party must prove on the balance of probabilities that the failure of medical skill resulted in the injury that could or should have been avoided.

Examples of Medical Negligence:

• Failure to diagnose a condition or a misdiagnosis;
• Failure to refer a patient to another specialist where it was necessary to do so;
• Incorrect or unnecessary surgical procedures;
• Error in a procedure or operation;
• Delay in providing a proper standard of medical care, diagnosis and treatment reducing a patient’s chance of full recovery from their medical condition;
• Birth Injuries to children or mothers;
• Failure to disclose risks or a treatment/operation;
• Hospital systems failure to maintain a hygienic, clean hospital causing patients to contract infections while in hospital such as MRSA.

What can be done after a Negligent act/omission takes place:

Some of the actions people want to happen after negligence occurs:

• An Explanation – People injured have a right to a full explanation of what happened. This may be forthcoming or it may not. Early resolution regarding this is best for all concerned but doesn’t always happen.
• An Apology – An injured person may demand a full and sufficient apology from the appropriate person in relation to the events.
• Justice to be done to alleviate the loss or pain.
• Financial Compensation – If a person has been injured to the negligence of another they have a right to compensation for the loss, suffering, pain and financial consequences that have arisen.

Case Process

We will want to meet with you and any relevant family members and take a full account of the turn of events as they happened, and obtain an understanding of the impact of the negligence on your life. We may need to obtain statements, medical records – past/present and engage the appropriate medical expert from Ireland or the U.K.

We may need to sit down with you and go through the medical records. On this basis we will have a greater understanding of any actionable negligence.

Once the building blocks of the case have been established and a full understanding of the needs to be achieved is obtained, if you are happy with the plan, we will begin proceedings and act for you to obtain the resolution.

Medical Negligence Claim* Time Limits

The statutory time limit in relation to medical negligence actions is two years. So, if a person has been injured through medical negligence he/she must initiate proceedings two years from the date of the cause of the action.

There is an exception to this strict rule but can only be relied on in exceptional circumstances.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have a claim for medical negligence ?

To answer this one should apply the following questions to the facts :

  • Was there a diagnosis or treatment on the part of a medical practitioner where there is a failure to a degree that no medical practitioner of equal specialist or general status and skill would be guilty of if acting with ordinary care ?
  • Did the medical provider deviate from a general and approved practice ?
  • Did the medical provider follow a course that  no medical practitioner of like specialisation and skill would have followed ?
  • Did the diagnosis or treatment the medical carer followed have inherent defects which should have been obvious ?
  • Did the diagnosis or treatment provided comply with careful conduct of a medical professional of like specialisation ?.

A medical carer will have a duty of care to their patient, therefore the above questions needs to be applied to the individual facts to answer this question. Once its clear negligence arises, it is necessary to prove that it was the negligent act / omission that led to the persons injury.

How hard is it to prove medical negligence ?

To succeed in a medical negligence claim, you need to provide evidence that proves the medical carer failed in their duty and this failure causing you harm / injury.

The particulars of negligence relevant to each case will be different, but it must be proved that the defendant did not exercise reasonable care, diligence, judgement and caution regarding the treatment given, or advice given, or management of the situation etc.

In a typical situation, a competent and professional medical person is expected to follow the recommended clinical procedures when faced with a dental problem, for example.

A patient can prove his/her the treatment or care provided was below the acceptable standard if, for example, the wrong treatment was conducted and it amounts to a situation that couldn’t have occurred with another professional practitioner.

Another requirement is that of causation. This links the actions taken by the medical provider to the injuries sustained. The patient must show that if it were not for the negligence of the medical carer, she/he wouldn’t have suffered an injury.

How long do clinical negligence claims take ?

This is difficult to answer with any precision as there are many variables here, and there isn’t a one size fits all in terms of having a defined answer.

The first point to consider is what is the attitude in terms of the defendant ? ie is liability admitted or not ?.

Evidently if liability is defended this increases the duration of the case and the court must ultimately give judgement.  

Another point to consider is what are the injuries of the person taking the case ? ie are they ongoing or not.

For example, lets say you have a fracture. This is a clearly defined injury with normally a clearly defined duration of recovery.

A court wants to know the diagnosis, prognosis, duration of recovery, nature of treatment etc. ie in order to have the full picture.

If a person requires further medical care, the persons doctor has not concluded the treatment required, and will therefore not be clear on all eventualities to describe to a court.

Another point to consider is how complex is the matter or not.

Some cases are complex, but a lot of cases are not complex and it is likely your solicitor has seen a case of similar features before.

We humans love complexity over simplicity.

Once proceedings are issued and if injuries are not ongoing, you can move your case on with relative speed to have it concluded at the earliest opportunity.

In our opinion claims of this nature do take longer in duration than personal injury* claims.

Medical Negligence Claim* Questions & Answers

If you have been injured due medical negligence you will have many questions you want answered.

We will answer any questions we can that you have, advise of the options available, advise of a course of action and represent you if required. People have many questions such as ‘do I have a case’, ‘how easy or difficult is this case going to be’, ‘what is it worth’, ‘how long is this case going to be’, for example. 

If you feel you have been injured due to medical negligence and have questions concerning this, we can be of assistance to you. 

Kieran Cleary and Roger Cleary can help with any questions you have regarding negligence, liability and what can be done in offices in Clonmel, Co. Tipperary or Dublin 7. 

Initial Advice Consultation

Contact Details:

1. Call us on 01 546 1121  or  052 61 21999 between the hours of  9 am to 5 pm – Monday to Friday.

2. Email us – info@clearysolicitors.com – with a contact number and we will call you back.

3. Fill out our online Enquiry Form to the right.

DISCLAIMER

Please be advised that the above-mentioned material is intended as an overview and as a broad out-line of the topic discussed. It should not be considered as complete and comprehensive legal advice, nor act as an appropriate substitute.
Due care has been taken in the publication of this article and we do not accept legal liability as a result of reliance on any material covered in the above article.

Personal Injuries * In contentious business, a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.