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Pressure Sore Negligence Claims

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When a person is immobile for a long period of time, they are typically bed bound. This places pressure on a particular area of their skin and can cause pressure sores (otherwise known as bedsores) which affects the blood flow to the skin.

If the person was in care in a hospital or a care home, it is the carer’s responsibility to do everything they can to prevent these sores as they have a duty of care for their patients by either providing better bed support or by regularly changing their patient’s position in order to spread the pressure.

Pressure sores can be extremely painful and can lead to complications, such as blood poisoning, bone and joint infection, cellulitis and, in some severe cases, it can be life-threatening. If you or someone you know has been affected by bed sores due to negligence from those who were in charge of caring for them, you may be eligible to make a claim for compensation.


Grades of pressure sores


Pressure sores are typically divided into four different categories, depending on the severity of the sore. Pressure sore grading is as follows:


· Grade 1: Discolouration on the area of skin

· Grade 2: Partial thickness and skin loss arises like a skin blister

· Grade 3: Full-thickness and skin loss, damage of subcutaneous tissue, shows like a deep crater in the skin

· Grade 4: Full-thickness and skin loss with severe necrosis extending to the underlying tissue, including muscle and bone, leaving an open wound.


Serious pressure sores can be extremely painful and can take extended periods of time to heal. The healing process often requires the aid of tissue viability nurses, who specialise in treating pressure sores.

Those at risk of developing pressure sores include people over 70 as their age can mean that they are less mobile, people that are paralysed or find it difficult to walk and people that are overweight.


What can pressure sore negligence claims be made for?


Pressure sore claims can be made for a variety of forms of negligence or substandard care from healthcare professionals, including:

· A failure to access and create a risk assessment for the patient’s body type and needs, meaning that their risk of pressure sores was increased.

· Ineffectively monitoring the patient for symptoms of bedsores during their stay at the hospital or care home.

· Not identifying symptoms of a pressure sore early enough, which caused the pressure sore to worsen.

· A failure to follow a pressure sore prevention plan and generally being inattentive.


What is needed for pressure sore negligence claims?


If you have experienced negligent treatment and suffered an illness or injury as a result and would like to commence a claim, it is vital to start building a case. In order to strengthen the case, evidence will be necessary. The evidence that you collect may come in the form of:


– Medical records

– Medical reports

– Photographs of the injury caused by the hospital negligence

– Evidence of financial losses caused by the injury

– A statement from the Claimant

– Witness statements


When seeking the evidence, you will need to request access to your medical records. Within the request, you will need to highlight which records you would like access to and any further information which may be required.


How is compensation for pressure sore negligence claims calculated?


The amount of compensation you receive will be split into general damages for your injuries and special damages for any additional losses.


General Damages – This is the amount you will receive for your pain, suffering and loss of amenity. To calculate this amount, we look at previous cases which are similar to yours, together with guidelines that are issued to Judges who decide the outcome of such claims if

they go to Court. Your case will be valued on the basis of your injuries as described by suitably qualified medical professionals.


Special Damages – These are any direct financial losses that you may have suffered as a result of your injuries. Typically, these may include loss of earnings up to the settlement, loss of earnings in the future or the costs of care provided to you as well as medical treatment costs and travel costs.


For more information on how your compensation will be calculated, contact Wildwood Legal today to get in touch with a personal injury solicitor to find out more. Compensation calculators may also be used.


Time limits for making pressure sore negligence claims


The law on time limits for clinical negligence claims is complicated. However, the general rule is that you have three years from the date of the accident to have either settled your claim or started court proceedings where the injury occurred.

The three-year deadline commences from the date that the injury occurred or from the date on which you realised that your injury or illness was associated with medical negligence. The three-year time limit for claiming compensation does not apply to under 18s; however, it will come into effect after their 18th birthday. There is also no time limit for individuals that lack the mental capacity to make a claim themselves.


How much do medical negligence claims cost?


We will always be 100% transparent about what our charges are; if we take on your medical negligence case, we will almost always do so on no win no fee agreements (also known as a conditional agreement).

This means that if you do not win your case, you do not pay us any fees at all. If we win the case, we take a small percentage of your compensation, which we will agree with you beforehand, to cover our costs.

We will never ask you to sign anything until you are completely happy with what it is that we are proposing.


How can Wildwood Legal assist?


At Wildwood Legal, we know that the risk factors of medical negligence can be devastating. If you have suffered from this, you need to seek legal advice – That’s where we come in.

We see all too often the significant effect that medical negligence can have on people’s lives. We can help on the financial side to get you on the road to recovery and help you to maximise the amount of compensation you receive.

Our core strength is in personal injury claims. We are experienced in helping you with any negligence claims that you may want to make. We aim to give you not only quality aid but flexibility and clarity as we know that these qualities are just as important.

Our law firm is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority; therefore, we provide everything that is needed to meet their high standards meaning that we are a trusted law firm. We offer services to individuals located in England and Wales. To make an enquiry, get in contact with us either email us or call us 01423 209 046 We have registered offices in Harrogate and London.

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