Government announces Lasting Power of Attorney “revamp”
We secured a £4m settlement for our client who developed spinal and brain injury following negligent care.
Our 55-year old client underwent a procedure to fix a cervical spinal cord compression that he had had since he was a child, and which was causing a progressive myelopathy and weakness in his upper and lower limbs.
A couple of days after the operation, he developed a mild upper gastrointestinal haemorrhage, for which it was decided that he needed a gastroscopy (OGD). He was transferred to the endoscopy suite and was given 92mgs of midazolam while he was in the Intensive Care Unit prior to his OGD procedure.
Upon returning to the ward after the operation he complained of shortness of breath, had an oxygen saturation of 80% and then suffered a respiratory arrest. He was resuscitated successfully, ventilated by a mask and prescribed flumazenil to reverse the effects of the midazolam. However, later that evening his oxygen saturations fell to 88% and he suffered a heart attack, from which he was again resuscitated.
As a result of the second arrest he suffered a prolonged period of anoxic damage to his brain, which resulted in Lance-Adams’ Syndrome and means he is now dependent upon 24 hour care. He suffers with mild limb weakness and spends all of his time in bed or in a wheelchair. He is able to move his legs but has no useful upper limb function and cannot stand or sit unsupported on the side of his bed, dependent instead on a mobile hoist.
The anoxia led to neuropathic bladder dysfunction affecting the storage and emptying of urine. He is unable to feed himself and is fed by a tube, while he also has severe dysarthria which affects all levels of communication with his family, friends and support workers.
Despite his disabilities, he can make his wishes known, has insight into his condition and is able to manage his own affairs. His case is that he did not need the OGD procedure and that, if he did need it, he should not have been sedated with midazolam given the cumulative dose that he had had in the previous week or so. He believed that if he had not been sedated he would not have suffered either arrest.
In addition, he alleged that he was not cared for in an appropriate high care area following the OGD and his first respiratory arrest and that, if he had been monitored in such an area, his respiratory arrests would have been detected and would have been appropriately managed.
After lengthy discussions the Defendant Trust admitted liability a month before trial and agreed to pay our client £1.69m, as well as £224,000 every year for the rest of his life. The lump sum settlement was calculated to be £4,348,880.
This blog summarises the position when a Defendant submits an application to commit a Claimant’s Litigation Friend for contempt of Court for false statements made in a document verified by a statement of truth.
On 2 February 2022 Mr Justice Richie gave Judgment on Cojanu, a clinical negligence claim where the Defendant advanced a defence of fundamental dishonesty.
Losing a loved one when you think it may be because they received poor medical care is incredibly stressful at a time when family and friends are grieving their loss. Often, people want to see a written record of the final days of their loved one and what happened to them, or they might want to go through years of records to ascertain whether there was diagnosis that may have been missed, such as cancer.
Last week the Ockenden report was finally published. A team of Midwives and Doctors, headed by Midwife, Donna Ockenden reviewed the maternity care given to 1,148 families between 2000 – 2019. The report made for shocking reading.
Breast cancer accounts for almost 15% of all new cancer cases and affects both men and women. There are an estimated 150 new cases every day. Sarah Harding’s death earlier this year was a tragic reminder that breast cancer also affects young and premenopausal women.
Today the Supreme Court has handed down its Judgment in this long-running case, and in plain terms, Lady Brownlie has won the Appeal.
On 6 July 2021, the Health and Social Care Committee published its report into maternity care in England. The report looks at maternity care across the country and analyses the progress of the Government so far in its commitments to improving maternity care.
Over the summer, the government suggested changes to the Highway Code to improve road safety for vulnerable road users. If the proposals are approved, they will change how pedestrians, cyclists and motorists are expected to behave on Britain’s roads.
According to the Urology Foundation, one in two of us will be affected by a urological condition in our lifetime.
10th September is World Suicide Prevention Day. Each year, on the same date, communities and organisations campaign on a global scale to raise awareness of the tragedy of suicide and explore ways in which we can all help to prevent it.
When a loved one dies, grief is difficult and there can be a lot to deal with. If someone dies as a result of medical negligence or personal injury, then it’s important to consider who can bring a claim.
Whether the claimant or defendant, successful parties to civil litigation can be disappointed to hear that they are highly unlikely to recover all of their legal spend. The losing party is only required to pay what is considered reasonable and proportionate. A key feature in what is recovered is the reasonableness of the hourly rates charged by the successful litigant’s solicitors.
An aortic dissection is a life-threatening condition, requiring early diagnosis and treatment. Sadly, classic symptoms are often misdiagnosed or dismissed, which quickly lead to the patient’s death. We have experience of successfully investigating claims of this nature.
Much has been said about the 2020 Court of Appeal judgment in Swift dealing with the disputed method by which claims for the cost of special accommodation following severe injuries are calculated, and rightly so; it was a privilege for one of the authors of this article to work on a case of such wide application and with such benefit for so many Claimants.
The recent decision in the case of Malik -v- St George’s University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust provides a further example of this approach. Mr Malik required emergency spinal surgery in the form of a laminectomy and discectomy at T10/11. No criticism was made of the performance of the surgery. Post-operatively Mr Malik experienced ongoing numbness and weakness in his left leg. His surgeon recommended further revision decompression surgery which unfortunately left Mr Malik with an incomplete paraparesis. He was classified as a T7 ASIA D paraplegic.
On the 28 July 2021, the Government unveiled the highly anticipated National Disability Strategy (‘the strategy’). Pledged in the Government’s 2019 manifesto, the aim is to “improve the everyday lives of disabled people”. The Prime Minister described the strategy as the most comprehensive, concerted, cross-government plan relating to disability ever. A bold claim, but is it justified?
July is International Group B Streptococcus (GBS) Awareness Month. As medical negligence specialists at Kingsley Napley, we have acted for many families who have been affected due to delays in the diagnosis and treatment of a GBS infection.
The Nursing Times recently published an article on blame culture within midwifery, which is apparently affecting staff retention. The article discussed a hearing of the Health and Social Care Select Committee which has been leading an Inquiry into the safety of maternity services in England
The FCA has launched a consultation on a technical note setting out guidance for companies applying for listing which have cannabis-related businesses. As with all companies applying for listing, those with cannabis related businesses must be assessed for eligibility for listing under the Listing Rules. Because of the legal complexities around cannabis businesses the FCA applies additional due diligence requirements to them.
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