Litigation – The rising tsunami is swamping us all.. NHSreality lists all the posts on litigation in the two years of existence. NFC (No fault compensation) is essential.

Kat Lay in The Times on 26th December 2014 reports: Lawyers under attack for £250m NHS fees bonanza

With litigation costing us all around £20 per head, and rising exponentially, there will be a great advantage to the Scots if they can bring in “no fault compensation” (NFC). This was rejected by the old NHS in 1966, and has been looked at several times since then. NHSreality lists all the posts on litigation in the two years of existence. Paul Fenn looked at this in 2000 in the BMJ (Current cost of medical negligence in NHS hospitals: analysis of claims database. BMJ 2000;320:1567 ) and the number of claims and the steepness of the curve have got considerably worse in 15 years. It is ironic that whilst the “legal aid” budget has been cut, the only people who can afford to litigate are those without any means, or those on a “no win no fee” deal. Despite this, the loss to the Health Service is rising as if there was no disincentive to litigate. It might be 10 times higher if there were lower financial barriers….

The MDU in it’s annual report 19th July 2013 says: £22.7bn NHS claims liabilities shows need for reform of compensation system

NHS clinical negligence liabilities 2008/9 to 2012/13

Table 1 – NHS clinical negligence liabilities 2008/9 to 2012/13

Kat Lay says: “The NHS complaints system should be “completely overhauled” in the face of rising litigation costs that now take up a quarter of the annual £1 billion bill for clinical negligence claims, an MP is demanding.

The amount paid out by the NHS Litigation Authority has almost doubled in five years, with legal costs of £250 million. In 2009-10 the total bill for claims was £650 million, with £150 million of it going to cover legal costs….”

16th July 2013: NHS legal claims will cost £15bn, it has been warned.

Hospital ‘superbug’ not monitored by government

Responding to the compensation culture – New Zealand’s Faultless Fix – Time for a change. Write to your MP and ask for a longer and fairer view for the future.

HS litigation claims double – which happens to be under the coalition.

NHS faces crisis in litigation as well as A&E. Introduce no fault compensation (NFC)?

£45m in cancer claims – over 8 years to 681 citizens

NHS faces legal bill as dozens suffer problems after private eye operations

Study questions surgical judgement: Prostate tests ‘would do more harm than good’

Primary care telephone triage does not save money or reduce practice workload

Fears raised ‘free NHS’ will come to an end: underfunding since before 2008

Resistance to change in NHS ‘has cost thousands of lives’

GP A&E Triage – would be a good idea if we had planned for the numbers needed. We have not.. and GP partnership and continuity of care is in decline

Smaller hospitals told to share their doctors on Skype

Medical Lawsuit cartoons, Medical Lawsuit cartoon, funny, Medical Lawsuit picture, Medical Lawsuit pictures, Medical Lawsuit image, Medical Lawsuit images, Medical Lawsuit illustration, Medical Lawsuit illustrations

Orthopaedic waiting lists: time for more, and equal access to, non-urgent centres

Firm charges NHS £80,000 legal fees for £1,000 payout

Truthfulness and Honesty with patients: Surgeons and Staff should be swabbed for superbugs – same as the patients

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The rising costs of failure: Worst hospitals cost NHS £300m (Now 12 months later it’s £1 billion!! – That’s £1,000,000,000 or £17 per person per annum)

Should accident victims who get a payout be entitled to free NHS care?

Medical negligence claims and human error

Its getting more serious.. Reform or die

The NHS in the age of anxiety: rhetoric and reality—an essay by Rudolf Klein

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NHS Dentistry

An individual case, which might be repeated across the country, is reported in a triad of posts here, and is not yet complete in that we don’t know the final outcome. 1.Malcolm Green – Apology Angers Family 2. The Death of Malcolm Green 3.Revisiting the death of Malcolm Green. The wrong people are likely to be criticised. Not neglect!. Will the local DGH learn from this episode?

Update 30th December 2014: Letter in the Telegraph: from Dr Anthony Barton

SIR – The sharp rise in the number of negligence claims against the NHS reflects the success of privatising funding access to justice. “No win, no fee” agreements have been replacing legal aid (Soaring legal costs will eat up Osborne’s £2bn for NHS”).

The new system provides access to justice to anyone according to the merits of the case, and regardless of means. Lawyers are paid only in successful cases. This imposes commercial discipline and financial prudence.

Legal aid was available only to a minority, and lawyers were paid regardless of the outcome – providing perverse incentives to run hopeless cases. It was a wasteful system that did not ensure access to justice for deserving cases.

Dr Anthony Barton
London N1

 

 

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This entry was posted in A Personal View, Perverse Incentives, Stories in the Media on by .

About Roger Burns - retired GP

I am a retired GP and medical educator. I have supported patient participation throughout my career, and my practice, St Thomas; Surgery, has had a longstanding and active Patient Participation Group (PPG). I support the idea of Community Health Councils, although I feel they should be funded at arms length from government. I have taught GP trainees for 30 years, and been a Programme Director for GP training in Pembrokeshire 20 years. I served on the Pembrokeshire LHG and LHB for a total of 10 years. I completed an MBA in 1996, and I along with most others, never had an exit interview from any job in the NHS! I completed an MBA in 1996, and was a runner up for the Adam Smith prize for economy and efficiency in government in that year. This was owing to a suggestion (St Thomas' Mutual) that practices had incentives for saving by being allowed to buy rationed out services in the following year.

One thought on “Litigation – The rising tsunami is swamping us all.. NHSreality lists all the posts on litigation in the two years of existence. NFC (No fault compensation) is essential.

  1. Pingback: Time to stop the indemnity circus | NHS reality. An NHS soapbox. Speakers' corner for the NHS.

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