General Practitioner Negligence
General practitioner negligence refers to a situation where a patient sustains a personal injury due to an error made by a medical practitioner professional.
What is general practitioner negligence?
Any claim for General Practitioner negligence has to show that your General Practitioner (GP) did not have the skill – or was not able to demonstrate the skill – to diagnose your symptoms “at the time and in those circumstances”.
Furthermore, it also has to be proven that had your GP referred you to a specialist, the specialist would have been able to identify your symptoms and treat them accordingly. Finally, it also has to be established that because your GP did not refer you to a specialist, you suffered the avoidable and quantifiable deterioration of a physical condition.
With so many contentious issues attached to GP negligence claims, the Injuries Board Ireland will decline to process an application for assessment of compensation for GP negligence, and you will have to engage a solicitor to act on your behalf.
The first thing a solicitor will do is to request access to your relevant medical records,, which will then be presented to a medical expert. The medical expert should be able to ascertain whether your GP was justified in refusing to refer you to a specialist on medical grounds and also that a specialist would have identified the symptoms that your GP was unable to.
The claim process
The medical expert will also try to establish the level that your health suffered as a result of your GP’s actions and, should there be a significant deterioration due to your GP´s negligence or a permanent condition developed which could have been avoided, will recommend to your solicitor that a claim for GP negligence is pursued.
Your solicitor will then send a Letter of Claim to your GP, advising him or her of your GP negligence claim and inviting a response. When a significant health issue has developed and GP negligence is not in doubt, your GP will also be invited to make an offer of settlement.
Usually, your GP would pass the letter onto his or her medical insurers who will conduct their investigation before liability is admitted, so the whole process to establish your claim for GP negligence compensation will have to be repeated. When the medical insurance company agree that you have been the victim of GP negligence, your solicitor will make his or her final calculations of how much compensation for GP negligence you will be entitled to receive.
No two GP negligence claims are the same – even when the reasons for bringing them are alike – and how much compensation for GP negligence you will be entitled to will be based on the extent and severity of your quantifiable injury in relation to your age, sex and general state of health prior to the condition developing for which you are making the GP negligence claim.
You will also be able to claim GP negligence compensation for any deterioration in your quality of life – indeed possibly even a reduction in your life expectancy – and any financial costs which you have incurred that are directly attributable to your GP´s breach in his or her duty of care.
However, before any consideration is given to how much compensation for GP negligence you may be entitled to, it is first important to establish that your GP has indeed been negligent and, due to the complicated nature of GP negligence claims, you are advised to speak directly with an experienced medical negligence solicitor at the first possible opportunity.
Statute of Limitation
The legal time limit to make a medical negligence claim is two years from the date of injury or date of knowledge that the injury or illness resulted from medical negligence. For children/minors, the time limit expires two years after their 18th birthday. You may contact a solicitor to discuss your case to advise of the Statute of Limitations applicable to your case.
- Have you had a surgical procedure that did not turn out as it should?
- Have you been left in pain, or do you continue to suffer from physical discomfort or physical scarring?
- Have you been misdiagnosed or had a delayed diagnosis of cancer or another serious illness affecting your health?
Any injury suffered during a medical procedure, whether it is physical or psychological, may have long-term effects on the victim and their families. Our medical negligence solicitors have assisted many clients in recovering maximum damages, and we believe in putting the needs of our clients first.
Coleman Legal LLP
84 Talbot Street, Dublin 1
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