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When things go wrong: the factors influencing clinical negligence compensation payments

When healthcare service falls short of acceptable standards, resulting in harm or injury to someone, it may be necessary to consider a medical or clinical negligence compensation claim.

Clinical negligence can take many forms, involving medical complications and procedure errors.

The nature and severity of the injuries are the most important determinant factors in assessing compensation levels. Still, the financial burden of treatments, care provision and medications are also important.

The government has set up a central fund to meet the cost of claims brought against the NHS.

In medical negligence cases, compensation is awarded for general damages and special damages.

What factors contribute to general damages in medical negligence?

General damages refer to non-financial losses awarded to compensate for the direct impact on a person’s life in terms of suffering and difficulties coping with everyday life.

Examples include:

- Physical pain

- Psychological harm caused by trauma or harassment

- Loss of spousal support and companionship (‘consortium’)  

- Loss of amenity is the recognition of the impact on the enjoyment of life beyond the ability to work.

The Judicial College publishes guidelines on the compensation range for general damages for the different types of injury. Special damages need to be calculated separately.

What factors contribute to specific damages in medical negligence?

Special damages are assessed to cover specific financial losses to help cover the costs of dealing with the problems arising. They will be case-specific but can include:

- Medical expenses and care costs

- Specialist equipment and any home adaption required

- Travel and other expenses

- Loss of earnings, including future earnings.

Contact the Medical Negligence Specialists at Graystons Solicitors

Making a clinical or medical negligence claim can seem daunting without the proper support to navigate a way through. At Graystons Solicitors, we can provide expert guidance throughout the process to achieve a successful outcome. Please call us on 0151 645 0055 for an informal chat or email


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