If you have suffered a personal injury as the result of medical negligence by a licensed professional, you may be entitled to compensation.

Under Irish law, a medical professional owes a duty of care to their patients. When this obligation is breached, there is often the basis for a medical negligence claim.

At Hughes & Associates Solicitors, we draw on the experience of some of Ireland’s best medical negligence solicitors. We will assess your case to determine whether your injury was the direct result of medical or clinical negligence, and, when there are grounds, we can claim compensation on your behalf.

Contact us today to provide details on your case by phoning +353 1 891 0020 or emailing info@hughessolicitors.ie.

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STATUTE

It is absolutely imperative to note that the law in relation to the Statute of Limitations (time limits) within which a case can be taken is a strict 2 years from the date of the injury in question and in the case of persons with intellectual impairment or in the case of Minors (persons under the age of 18 years) the time limits are extended by the legislation.

In The Media:
Daniel Hughes – Secures €10 Million Settlement for Client in High Court Action

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What is Medical Negligence?

Medical negligence can be defined as any action by a medical practitioner or a member of hospital staff that falls below an acceptable level of care, and directly results in an injury, illness or disease.

It can also occur when your doctor fails to take appropriate action by way of treatment, and your condition is worsened as a result.

Medical negligence can be a complex issue. With certain procedures and forms of treatment, there are inherent risks that may not constitute medical negligence.

In Ireland, it must be proven that on the balance of probabilities, a medical professional’s lack of skill, or inability to perform their duty, resulted in a patient sustaining an injury or an avoidable deterioration to their condition.

Naturally, this allocation of blame varies from case to case. If you feel you have suffered an injury as the result of medical negligence, your best chance of receiving compensation is through contacting experienced solicitors.

At Hughes & Associates, we assess all manner of medical negligence claims.

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How Much Can I Claim for Medical Negligence in Ireland?

The State Claims Agency allege that the average compensatory fee for medical negligence in Ireland is €63,000, but that figure is of course dependent on the specifics of your case. 

For instance our offices recently secured an award of damages of  €10 million for our client that will significantly improve her quality of life into the future. This was a medical negligence case in which our client sustained life changing injuries. See “In The Media”

Last year, according to figures released by the Department of Health, the Irish State paid out almost €315 million in damages in settlement of medical negligence claims.

Landmark Medical Negligence Cases in Ireland

According to the Irish Times, the largest award for damages paid out by the State in 2020 was €22.6 million awarded to a person that suffered cerebral palsy during birth complications in hospital.

According to the Irish Times, the largest ever award for damages paid out by the State was €32.4 million which was awarded to a young boy left brain damaged and permanently disabled after the Defendant Hospital failed to diagnose his infection when he was a baby.

Read the article here. 

There were awards of €18.4 million, €14.8 million and €12 million to three others who also suffered cerebral palsy during delivery.

€9.4 million was paid in damages to a person who suffered a catastrophic non-brain injury in hospital.

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How Long Do I Have to Make a Medical Negligence Claim?

From the date of your injury, you have two years to file a medical negligence claim under the Irish statute of limitations.

There can be exceptions to these time limits. If, for example, you only realise the effects of an injury or improper treatment years after your experience, your two years begin on your date of knowledge.

This allows for certain medical negligence claims to be made in areas of misdiagnosis and other medical malpractice that are not initially obvious.

In The Media:

Daniel Hughes of Hughes & Associates Solicitors discusses the returned verdict of medical misadventure in the death of a new-born baby who died after after her heart was pierced as she underwent a procedure in the Coombe Hospital.

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Types of Medical Negligence Claims

Sub standard medical care can occur in a variety of professional environments and medical negligence claims are manifold.

Every claim is different but your chances of receiving compensation are aided by contacting a solicitor with experience in medical negligence law.

Our team at Hughes & Associates have vast knowledge on the following types of medical negligence and more.

Misdiagnosis Claims

Misdiagnosis occurs when a practitioner fails to correctly diagnose a patient’s condition. This can mean they diagnose the patient with another illness, or they fail to recognise any issues at all.

The consequence of this malpractice is that a patient may end up receiving the wrong treatment, or no treatment whatsoever, for their condition. By the time they are properly treated, they may have suffered physical and monetary debilitation.

Misdiagnoses can be made with almost any ailment, be it a form of cancer or an incorrect diagnosis of an individual’s mental health.

If it can be proved that the absence of a proper diagnosis directly resulted in your condition worsening, you may well have grounds for a misdiagnosis claim.

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Pharmacy Medical Negligence Claims

Pharmacies are vital resources in our health sector and require a highly skilled and competent staff. When a health professional in a pharmacy breaches their duty of care to a patient, there is often cause for a medical negligence claim.

A pharmacist’s primary role is to provide the correct medication, and failing to do this can constitute medical negligence. They may fail to provide the correct dosage of medication or even give patients the wrong medication entirely.

Pharmacy workers are expected to provide clear instructions on how to take medication. They must also keep accurate records of the medication they give patients and failure to do so may be considered negligence.

Other grounds for a pharmacy medical negligence claim may be a failure to warn patients of the side effects of their treatment or an inadequate storage system put in place for pharmacy medication.

Getting the correct medical treatment is understandably a vitally important process. If you suffer as a result of pharmacy medical negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.

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Dental Negligence Claims

With roughly 2,000 practising dentists in Ireland’s ever-growing dental industry, the country boasts a high standard of dental and orthodontal care.

Still, with so many dental practices in operation, there is scope in the field for errors and negligence. These incidences of malpractice concern more than just dentists – anyone that works in the dental industry holds a duty of care to their patients.

Damage can be done as a result of negligence from hygienists, surgeons, orthodontists and technicians. Where there is risk of an injury, a dental professional must operate with skill and care.

Potential examples of dental negligence include:

  • Nerve damage
  • Dental misdiagnosis
  • Infection arising from improper treatment
  • Incorrect tooth extraction
  • Inadequate crowns and fillings
  • Failure to manage or treat tooth decay and gum disease
  • Inadequate hygiene standards
  • Improper root canal treatment

Other injury claims for dental negligence are also valid under Irish law.

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Cosmetic Surgery Claims

Cosmetic surgery serves to help individuals who simply want to alter their appearance, as well as people who have suffered disfiguring personal injuries. It is a complex issue that often lacks proper regulation under Irish law.

Given the sensitivity involved with forms of treatment that alter physical appearance, cosmetic surgery requires highly skilled medical professionals.

Plastic surgeons are required to undergo specialist medical training and register with the Medical Council of Ireland as a specialist in their field, but any registered doctor can label themselves a cosmetic surgeon.

With the surgeries involved being so delicate, there are often occasions on which errors are made or the practitioner in question displays an inadequate skill level.

Some examples of operations and treatments that can result in cosmetic negligence include:

  • Botox injections
  • Abdominoplasty/Tummy tuck surgery
  • Breast augmentation and implants
  • Ear surgery
  • Rhinoplasty/Nose adjustment surgery
  • Cosmetic dentistry negligence
  • Eyelid surgery
  • Liposuction
  • Inadequate care in the aftermath of cosmetic surgery
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Mental Health Negligence

Mental health negligence is another complex and sensitive issue, but it is important to note that if you have suffered trauma or a personal injury as a result of professional negligence over mental health, you may be entitled to compensation.

It is a health sector that is often lambasted for being particularly underfunded and, while it is full of hard-working, highly skilled medical staff, it is often an area in which patients are mistreated and potentially neglected.

Mental health negligence can come in the form of misdiagnosis, wrongful prescriptions and a lack of access to proper healthcare. Patients are sometimes discharged too soon or not referred to another facility for further treatment when it is needed.

Life-altering injuries can be sustained as a result of improper mental healthcare. Patients can be impacted by injuries that arise from self-harm or even attempts at suicide.

It is important to again emphasise how delicate these cases can be. You may have been the victim of medical negligence with regards to mental healthcare but it is crucial you or a loved one contact an experienced solicitor to properly assess your case.

Hughes & Associates have plenty of knowledge on mental health negligence and our medical negligence team are on hand to offer guidance and support.

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Hospital Negligence Claims

Hospitals across Ireland face enormous demands and strains on facilities every day. Their medical staff are undoubtedly highly skilled and extremely hard-working.

Ireland’s aging population places huge demand on medical services and the burden of functioning through Covid further exhausted the Irish system.

Still, mistakes and negligence do occur. When a patient’s condition suffers as a result of clinical negligence, it is only right we hold the hospital accountable.

Define Hospital Negligence

Hospital negligence occurs when a medical professional’s actions or inactions in a hospital setting cause a patient to sustain injury, damage, illness or disease. It can refer to all manner of medical neglect.

Medical practitioners hold a duty of care to their patients and this applies to all hospital staff. If their medical care or medical knowledge is inadequate to the point of causing personal injury, you may want to seek legal representation to give yourself a chance of receiving compensation.

EXAMPLES OF HOSPITAL NEGLIGENCE CLAIMS:

  • Claims made for wrongful death in hospitals
  • Nursing negligence claims
  • Acquired brain injury claims
  • Misdiagnosis/Diagnosis not provided inside appropriate time limits
  • A&E negligence claims
  • Claims made for improper application of anaesthetic
  • Ambulance service negligence claims
  • Failure to act on symptoms or test results in a timely and appropriate manner
  • Failure to provide correct prescriptions for medication
  • Facilities, equipment and surgical instruments not being properly cleaned and sterilised
  • Slips, trips and falls in hospitals
  • General surgery claims
  • Gynaecological claims
  • Gastroenterology and endoscopy claims
  • Inadequate medical records kept on behalf of patients

This list can go on and on. As is evident here, hospital negligence covers a wide range of potential damages and, if you feel you have suffered as a result of negligence from a medical professional, the best course of action is to contact medical negligence solicitors with legal expertise.

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Birth Injury Claims

Birth injuries are among the most tragic and devastating negligence cases that come before Irish courts. They concern injuries sustained by infants during labour, delivery and in the neonatal period.

It is wise to seek expert advice on birth injuries from obstetricians and neonatologists at a maternity hospital in order to establish a breach of duty on the part of your medical practitioner. Assigning blame in these cases can be complex and delicate.

Oftentimes, a baby can suffer a physical injury through no fault of any hospital staff. Malpractice can and does occur, however, and when that is the case, medical negligence litigation may be appropriate.

Examples of birth injury claims:

  • Brachial palsy
  • Fractures
  • Swelling or bruising of the head
  • Facial nerve injuries
  • Breakage of small blood vessel’s in an infant’s eyes

Daniel Hughes of Hughes & Associates Solicitors discusses the returned verdict of medical misadventure in the death of a new-born baby who died after after her heart was pierced as she underwent a procedure in the Coombe Hospital.

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Steps to Take When You Suffer From Medical Negligence

Getting in touch with good medical negligence solicitors is crucial in determining the basis for any medical negligence cases. The sooner you raise the issue, and provide your representation with medical records and evidence of malpractice, the better your chances of claiming compensation.

If you feel you have received inadequate medical care, and that it has resulted in your condition worsening, our team’s legal knowledge at Hughes & Associates Solicitors will aim to provide you with a solid medical negligence case.

Contact Hughes & Associates for help with your Medical Negligence Claim

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Why Are Medical Negligence Cases Important?

Medical negligence cases primarily serve to compensate people who have suffered as a result of improper care. Adequate treatment is not a privilege, and by fighting meritorious cases we hope to ensure the standard of care in Ireland improves.

We hold the upmost respect for those working in the medical profession, but when things do go wrong, patients deserve support.

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Hughes & Associates offer the very best legal services in the field of medical negligence. We have extensive experience with the health system and its legal process – and we will aim to calculate fees that ensure you secure proper compensation.

Dealing with hospital boards and all of the potential reasons for a medical negligence claim is a tricky business. The burden is undoubtedly eased by contacting a team with real knowledge of the landscape and of Irish law as a whole.

You can contact us today to provide details on your case by phoning +353 1 891 0020 or emailing info@hughessolicitors.ie.

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