The time for breast screening is periodical and patients, relying on medical professionals to provide an indication as to when screening should be undertaken, have not had the appropriate screening at the appropriate time.
Screening is important as a potential cancer diagnosis can be a tense and emotional time. A prompt diagnosis, not only helps to reassure patients that they’re in good hands, it also improves their chances of catching the disease early and beating the disease.
The number of cases is growing in the UK, highlight how serious illnesses can be missed at initial assessments, something which is very worrying with life-threatening conditions. Yet, the number of potential cases has skyrocketed over recent days with an admission, from the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, that a computer error has meant that 450,000 women may have missed their screening and up to 270 patients have had their life shortened as a result.
There are estimates that compensation, payable for shortening an individual’s life expectancy, by failing to promptly scan patients resulting in later diagnosis of cancer could reach £100million not to mention the need to rescan approximately 300,000 women. The number of those affected could increase and, more significant, the number of lives cut short by the admitted computer error could rise.
Individuals, who have sadly died as a result of this error are family members, parents and grandparents. Those families have lost love ones and suffered bereavement as a result. Although compensation cannot make right the error that has occurred, some families will be entitled to be reimbursed for funeral expenses, bereavement, dependency on that family member and loss of love and affection.
Here, at Williamsons, we have the experience in providing the help and reassurance to those families as well as a sympathetic ear. We strive to leave no stone unturned and to highlight failings to attempt to prevent those failings occurring to other families.
One of our medical negligence solicitors, Wayne Walker, has a wealth of experience in this area. He regularly acts for bereaved families whether it is through an inquest process or a claim for clinical negligence. Wayne says “ideally, I would not like any family to go through clinical negligence resulting in injury or death. The Inquest process is daunting for families who have not been through it before and, also, a claim for clinical negligence puts bereavement on hold as there are always reminders of the treatment received. That said, my clients genuinely are not interested in a compensation award – their human instinct is to highlight problems so that changes can be made. I regularly get told that no family should be made to go through those events again”.
You can read more about the screening scandal here: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/breast-cancer-screening-compensation-jeremy-hunt-deaths-lawyers-negligence-a8335151.html
If you feel like you may be affected by the failures admitted by Mr Hunt, you can contact the breast cancer screening helpline on 0800 169 2692 or visit https://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/
If you, or any of your family have been effected by a similar story please contact Williamsons Solicitors, on 01482 323697, for free advice.