The NHS is nothing short of a national treasure; it is a crowning achievement in healthcare, providing world-class treatment free at the point of use for every UK citizen. The NHS successfully treats millions of patients each year, despite the various setbacks and funding issues that have seen it struggle through the rigours of the coronavirus pandemic.
However, there are a select few that, unfortunately, suffer the indignity of receiving improper care when seeking help. There have been some high-profile cases of severe surgical negligence, such as that of the NHS surgeon who injured three patients within a week. However, incorrect treatment can take all manner of shapes and guises, from incorrect prescriptions to mistakes in outpatient care. These instances are thankfully rare, but in the unfortunate circumstance that you believe yourself to have been treated incorrectly, you should take the following steps.
Identifying Incorrect Treatment
Firstly, discovering whether or not you have suffered incorrect treatment for a condition can be a difficult process. In cases where an incident involves improper behaviour from a doctor, nurse or other medical profession, it can be easier to discern improper care.
However, where treatment itself is concerned, you need to be able to draw a link between your treatment and your condition. This requires familiarity with your condition and with your regular treatment. Requesting your medical records can help you stay abreast of your treatment, and spot inconsistencies when they appear
Keep Track of Symptoms
Your symptoms after treatment are your primary evidence for improper care. If your symptoms worsen after treatment, or you feel they have worsened as a result of your treatment, you may have grounds to claim that your treatment was incorrect – and incorrect treatment from a medical professional could justify a case for medical negligence. Keep a journal of your symptoms, and ensured entries are dated. Having a timeline of your symptoms can help you build an effective case.
Keeping a journal of your symptoms is especially important as a form of evidence gathering. In the event that your suspicions are correct, and that you have a case for a clinical negligence claim, you will need all the evidence you can gather to support your claim. This includes medical records, personal accounts, testimony from friends and family and second opinions from other medical professionals.
Contact a Professional
Lastly, with an outline of your case and all your available evidence collected, you should consult with a professional in the field of medical negligence. An initial half-hour consultation with a solicitor can often be arranged for free, giving you the chance to ask important questions about your case and ascertain the strength of your claim. From this consult, you may be able to arrange representation, which will give you the tools necessary to seek compensation for your injury.