Making a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer can be an emotionally traumatic event. Not only are you acknowledging that your condition has deteriorated far further than it should have, but you are also making plans for your financial security – and the financial security of your family – while possibly undergoing invasive treatment to fight the disease.
It is understandable if you consider making a claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer too draining to cope with. It is not an easy process and your claim is likely to be contested by the NHS Trust responsible for your care. However there are benefits to making a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer – not least that it may prevent the errors which caused the deterioration of your condition from happening to somebody else.
Making a Claim for a Missed Diagnosis of Cancer
Once your cancer has been correctly diagnosed, it is in your best interests to speak with a medical negligence solicitor as soon as you are able. Your eligibility to make a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer will depend on the nature of the tumour and the length of time that passed between the missed diagnosis of cancer and the correct diagnosis.
Your solicitor will be unable to confirm your eligibility to claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer until he or she has accessed your medical records and had them reviewed by an independent medical expert. When it is confirmed that there has been an “unfavourable outcome” due to medical negligence (rather than an increase in the chance of an unfavourable outcome), you solicitor will send a “Letter of Claim” to the NHS Trust responsible for your care.
The Letter of Claim advises the NHS Trust that you have suffered the avoidable deterioration of a cancer and, due to a medical practitioner´s negligence, you are making a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer. As mentioned above, the NHS Trust is likely to contest the claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer, but provided your solicitor has compiled a sufficiently strong case on your behalf, liability for the avoidable deterioration of cancer will eventually be admitted.
The Settlement of your Compensation Claim for the Failure to Diagnose Cancer
The settlement of your compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer will depend on several factors – for example whether the opportunity still exists to treat the advanced cancer and what impact the missed diagnosis has for your life expectancy. Obviously the younger you are, the more the issue of life expectancy becomes a factor.
You will also be compensated for your future pain and suffering as you undergo more treatment than may have been necessary with an early diagnosis, and for the deterioration in your quality of life. In the likely event that you have suffered some form of psychological injury, your solicitor will also account for this factor when calculating the settlement of your compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer.
The settlement of your claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer will also account for your future loss of income. Your age will again be a major consideration in the calculation of compensation, as will your marital status, whether you have dependent family members and financial liabilities such as a mortgage that you may not be able to maintain while you are unable to work.
Independent Legal Advice about Cancer Misdiagnoses
Because your eligibility to claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer is not guaranteed, we invite you to contact our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau to discuss the criteria for making a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer. Our experienced medical negligence solicitor will be able to explain in plain English the conditions that apply in your particular circumstances.
Our solicitor will also be able to answer any legal questions you may have about the process of making a claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer – what is involved, how long it will take, the reports that have to be compiled, etc. – without any obligation on you to proceed with a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer.
The aim of our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau is to put your mind at rest over the options that are available to you. Our professional and impartial legal advice about cancer misdiagnoses should help you decide whether you have a claim for a missed diagnosis of cancer that might be worth your while to pursue. The sooner you call our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau, the sooner we will be able to resolve any concerns you have about making a compensation claim for the failure to diagnose cancer.