Latest News & Views

Posted on 11th September 2017

Government Cuts Blamed For Rise In Compensation Claims

Last year the cost of compensation claims rose by 72% to £28.9m and the rise has been blamed on Government cuts. NHS Resolution claim that successful claims with a primary or secondary were caused by “inadequate nursing care.”

Primary injuries include 63 cases of fatalities, 13 cases of brain damage, 151 claims were in relation to the development of pressure sores and 108 instances of broken bones. In addition 10 patients said that poor care led them to contract a bug and 63 said they suffered pain needlessly.

In total 506 cases for avoidable amputations, failed cosmetic procedures, undiagnosed broken bones and heart attacks as well as needless pain occurred because patients did not receive correct nursing care.

Some media sources claim there are as many as 40,000 unfilled nursing positions across England. A rally by nurses outside Parliament claim that hospital wards are unsafe because of understaffing. The head of nursing practice at the Royal College of Nursing (RCON) – Wendy Preston commented “Patients deserve the best care possible and it’s unacceptable this is not always the case”

She continued “There is a proven link between safe staffing levels and quality of care. And with 40,000 nursing vacancies across England, it is unsurprising patients are not getting the care they need. The Government needs to take immediate action. Finances should never come before patient care and safety”

On average the patients who suffered a heart attack following poor nursing care received £50,000 whilst broken bones led to pay-outs of £16,000, £28,000 for pressure sores and £650,000 for brain damaged patients.

Complications following poor nursing care averaged £60,000 per patient.

The worst performing hospital trusts were:

  1. Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals Trust                                     29 instances
  2. Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Trust                  29 instances
  3. Worcester Acute Hospitals Trust                                                 24 instances
  4. Leeds Teaching Hospitals                                                             17 instances
  5. Sheffield Teaching Hospital Trust                                               17 instances
  6. Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust                                                     17 instances

In total there were 7300 successful clinical negligence compensation claims last year and 590 of those settled with a pay-out of over £250,000.


Whilst understaffing is undoubtedly a big factor in nursing compensation claims, failures by other medical staff also feature heavily in compensation claims such as midwives.

We have reported regularly on medical negligence compensation claims involving new born babies. These compensation claims are often high value and occur due misreading foetal heartrate monitoring equipment. Staff training therefore also plays a big part on the number of compensation claims.

If you have suffered an injury because of the negligent act by a medical professional, contact us on 0330 355 9210 or for a free claim assessment.