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Pressure Sore Compensation Claim Settled for £30,000 by Clinical Negligence Solicitor

05 September 2012

Instructions were received to represent a man in a case of Clinical Negligence as a result of the Defendant’s failure to prevent the development of Pressure Ulcers.

Our client was diagnosed with progressive Multiple Sclerosis in June 2001 and sleeps on an NHS profiling bed with a variable air foam mattress which forms part of his pressure ulcer prevention.

Our client was admitted to the Defendant’s hospital in August 2010 due to shortness of breath.  He was assessed and admitted overnight for observation.  During this period our client was nursed on a pressure relieving mattress and it was noted that he was on the high risk category of pressure ulcer development.  Our client was discharged home the following day and was assisted by a carer.

On 24th August 2010 our client awoke feeling unwell and was readmitted to hospital for investigation and treatment.  He awoke on 25th August 2010 with excruciating pain in his buttocks.  It was later noted that Pressure Sores had formed and dressings were applied to the relevant areas.

Following discharge, our client’s pressure ulcers required treatment by the District Nursing Service on a daily basis and did not heal until approximately Christmas 2010.

Our client submitted that the Defendant failed to regard him as being clinically at very high risk of pressure ulcer development and that failure to do so represented a breach of duty that nobody of medical opinion would accept as reasonable.  Our client also submitted that the nursing care received between the periods of 24th to 27th August 2008 in respect of his pressure area care fell below a standard which could be expected from a reasonably competent nurse.  The very high risk of pressure ulcer development was foreseeable and preventable.

Medical evidence was obtained and was submitted to the Defendant.

A response was not forthcoming from the Defendant in relation to medical evidence or liability and it was considered necessary to commence County Court proceedings.  A response was not received from the Defendant until 13th February 2012.

A liability decision remained outstanding. Further medical evidence was obtained and Counsel was instructed to advise in conference. Our client made a Part 36 offer to settle his damages in the sum of £30,000.  This offer was subsequently accepted by the Defendant together with a full admission of liability, thereby completing the clinical negligence claim.

Iona Meeres-Young is a Clinical Negligence Solicitor at Slater and Gordon Lawyers in London.

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