Patients Compensated for Neglect in Hospitals
A report released by the Care Quality Commission recently made headlines when it exposed that an alarming 1 in 4 hospitals in the UK failed to provide acceptable standards of care to patients. The report found that basic requirements, such as the provision of food and water to patients, were often not met and that many hospitals were still failing to treat older patients with dignity.
After these disappointing findings, Worcestershire Acute NHS Trust has been forced to pay compensation to those who suffered an appalling lack of care at both its Alexandra Hospital and the Worcestershire Royal Hospital between 2002 and 2011. The recent news relates to a total of 35 claims brought against the Trust for its failures to meet basic standards when treating patients. They included instances where patients had drinks left for them which were out of their reach, where patients were unwashed and left in their own excrement, and cases where patients were injured when being transferred and transported.
Whilst Worcestershire Acute NHS Trust has issued an apology, accepting that the treatment fell below the required standard, it has also stated that “all of the cases cited are several years old, in many incidences, more than a decade old” and has not accepted legal liability.
Unfortunately, these types of cases continue to occur all too frequently, particularly with older patients who are particularly vulnerable . I hope that the report of the Care Quality Commission will go some way to ensure that changes are made.
Where injuries have already occurred, by carefully assessing the quality of care given against the standard required, we regularly help patients and their families obtain compensation for injuries suffered as a result of negligence in hospitals.