Medical negligence costs NHS Trusts £33 million

NHS Trusts in the West Midlands have had to pay out £33 million in damages to medical negligence victims since 2007, sources show.

West Midlands news source the Express and Star has reported that the litigation authority for the NHS has recently released data that show personal injury compensation figures. From 2007-2008, the figures show that £8.7 million was spent on compensating medical negligence victims, while the 2009-2010 figures indicate a rise to £12.6 million in compensatory damages.

In a surprising turn of events, the  Dudley Group of Hospitals was indicated to be the most expensive trust, paying out £14.2 million to injured former patients over the last three years.  In comparison Mid-Staffordshire Trust, which has been recently rocked by scandal, paid out a comparatively paltry £2.4 million, though the figure is not inclusive of an additional £1 million that industry experts expect to be made to the families of the victims of substandard care at the hands of Stafford Hospitals.

A Healthcare Commission investigation discovered that significantly serious hospital failings may in fact be responsible for the unnecessary deaths of between 400 and 1,200 patients from 2005 until 2008. Such failures to provide adequate care include reports of reception staff with no medical training making A&E assessments all in an alleged attempt to cut hospital costs.

Thanks to a public inquiry now underway in order to investigate the scandal, not only are there in excess of one one million pages to be examined as evidence but a large number of witnesses are now slated to be interviewed. However, Martin Yates, NHS Trust former chief executive, has stated that he has no intentions of speaking at the inquiry due to the fact that the scandal has resulted in his development of post traumatic stress disorder.

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