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Serious medical accidents triple in ten years


Data released by NHS Digital has revealed that the number of hospital attendances caused by medical accidents has tripled over the course of ten years.

The number of patients who needed extra treatment due to an “unintentional cut, puncture, perforation or haemorrhage during surgical and medical care” rose from 2,193 in 2005 to 6,082 in 2015. Campaigners have blamed the increase in this form of medical negligence on staff shortages and inadequate training.

Peter Walsh, head of patient safety charity Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA), believes this is a problem that the medical profession itself is acutely aware of:

“There is a lot of concern among surgeons that the training they get is not as thorough and adequate as used to be the case. There is not as much time spent on technical skills.”

Whilst on the rise, fortunately these kinds of medical accidents are still exceedingly rare – but their effect on patients’ lives cannot be overstated. Jay Nathwani, Senior Associate Solicitor at Barcan+Kirby and AvMA panel member, comments:

“Today’s report highlights the need for experienced clinical negligence lawyers, both to ensure that the victims of incidents like these get the support and assistance they need and to help the NHS learn from its mistakes. With over 17 years’ experience in the medico-legal field my advice for anyone who has suffered from this kind of injury, and especially those who are still suffering from the results, is to seek out a specialist clinical negligence firm who have the skills and knowledge to bring about a proper investigation on their behalf.”

“Having represented a client who suffered a perforated bowel during a routine colonoscopy I know how devastating such incidents can be, particularly when they take place in a hospital setting where your health is supposed to improve and not be made worse.”

Further information

If you’ve been the victim of a surgical mistake that left you in need of further treatment, you should seek legal advice. To speak with one of our expert medical negligence solicitors, call 0117 325 2929 or complete our online enquiry form.

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