Have you ever made a claim for medical negligence?
I haven’t but I have come close to considering it.
My NHS experience
A number of years ago I became really breathless and felt absolutely rubbish. I saw various GPs over the course of many months who diagnosed me with a variety of ills ranging form panic attacks to stress to blood pressure problems. I was given a lot of tablets and tests and told to come back if things weren’t better. I went back time and gain and kept being treated for symptoms but nothing stopped the breathlessness and night waking got worse. I tried going to the gym to lose weight thinking it would help me feel better but exercising made me feel awful and so it went on and I got worse and worse and worse. I was feeling pretty low as the Christmas came by fed up of feeling poorly and desperate to feel well and strong again. I insisted I was seen by the lung clinic at the hospital and a referral was put in.
10 minutes after arriving for my appointment at the hospital I was in high dependency diagnosed with a paralysed diaphragm and on a ventilator. Oh my goodness was I relieved,
The care I got in hospital was exemplary. I was listened too so carefully, tests were run and everything was explained to me so clearly The NHS is a wonderful gift and we are so very lucky to have it. I was in a while and thoroughly checked over. I was a bit of a mystery to them all and I had many tests and talks an have had repeated appointments since. My condition has never improved and I remain on a nightly ventilator but on the whole I am strong fit and well but the paralysis remains and we have no idea why it occurred to this day.
I learnt through it all to persist when you are unwell and to demand to be heard.
I did feel sad and upset about the care I had received pre hospital but it was explained to me that my condition was highly unusual and that a doctor was very likely to have ever come across it.
I did wonder about filing a medical negligence claim at the time as by the time I finally got seen at hospital I had been ill for many months., However at no point was the care that I had received poor it was more that I was a mystery really. The NHS have supported me for several years now and I would be in a right mess without them.
I know there are cases where people need to and should make claims but I think mine wss an odd situation and no one expect the specialists actually understood it. I did lose many months of work and as a self employed person this cost me a lot, but I dont actually think it was anybody’s fault it was just circumstances.
Have you had any experience of this?
My NHS experience by Becky Goddard-Hill