A woman, who was the victim of negligent heart surgery when she was one day old, has been awarded one million dollars in heart injury at birth compensation by a court in Pasadena, Los Angeles – more than thirty years after her injury occurred.
The unnamed female underwent corrective heart surgery to repair the septal wall between the two sides of her heart shortly after she was born in May 1979 at the Huntingdon Hospital in Pasadena. However, during the operation, the vena cava artery – the artery which carries de-oxygenised blood to the heart – was attached to the wrong side of the septal wall and, as a consequence of this mistake, the flow of blood was directed into the heart´s left atrium instead of the right atrium. As a result the girl suffered from generalised hypoxia, physical disability and other health problems as she grew up.
Despite frequents post-operative checks by her surgeon – Dr. Alan Gazzaniga of Pasadena – and other medical experts the cause of the girl´s condition was never identified until 2007. Shortly before the woman´s thirtieth birthday in April 2009, she underwent corrective surgery at USC Hospital in Pasadena. The operating surgeon on this occasion described Dr. Gazzaniga´s surgery as “baffling” and “incorrect” and attributed the woman´s “crippling oxygen deprivation and resulting disabilities accompanied with her oxygen starved condition and overall ill health” directly to the negligence of her original surgeon.
After seeking legal advice, the woman made a claim for heart injury at birth compensation against Dr. Gazzaniga. The woman´s legal representatives argued that, although the injury had been sustained more than thirty years ago, the discovery of the cause for the physical condition had happened within the Statute of Limitations. When this argument was opposed by defending counsel, it was contended that it was a reasonable assumption that Dr. Alan Gazzaniga had met the required standard of care at the time of the original operation, and the claimant could not be expected to have known that her heart condition was the result of alleged medical negligence by her surgeon as she was growing up.
This argument was accepted by the judge, and the case proceeded to court. The woman´s legal team prepared a substantial team of expert witnesses, including three cardiothoracic surgeons, who demonstrated how the heart injury was sustained and what the effects had been. After three weeks of litigation, the jury at the Los Angeles County Superior Court found in the woman´s favour and awarded her one million dollars in heart injury at birth compensation.
A nightclub singer, who was shot an injured in an unprovoked attack after finishing his performance, has been awarded 673,000 dollars in compensation for lack of club security by a court in Washington.
Jamel Williams (26) from Baltimore in Maryland had been performing at The Island Cafe Restaurant and Bar in Washington D.C. on March 15, 2008. After finishing his performance, and while speaking with friends, an unidentified man entered the bar, approached Jamel and fired one gunshot. The bullet went through Jamel´s hand and lodged in his head, where it remains due to the risk of having it removed.
Jamel alleged that the nightclub had been negligent and responsible for his injuries by failing to provide adequate security to prevent the attacker from entering the club and attacking him. In his claim for lack of club security compensation, Jamel claimed that the nightclub had received notice of the likelihood of violence due to multiple violent crimes which had been committed in the vicinity in the recent past.
At the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, Judge Craig Iscoe made an ex-parte ruling in favour of Jamel, and awarded him 650,000 dollars in general damages for the pain and suffering he had experienced at the time of the shooting, with a further 23,172 dollars in special damages compensation for lack of club security to cover his medical costs.
A refuse lorry driver, whose spine was compressed following a crash due to the front wheel of his vehicle collapsing, has been awarded 11.4 million dollars in faulty vehicle accident compensation by a jury in California.
Raymond Mariolle (46) from Brentwood, California, drove refuse lorries for twenty years prior to his accident in 2007, when the front right hub of his lorry cracked – resulting in the wheel becoming detached and the 27 ton vehicle tumbling to the ground.
Despite being in the cab of the vehicle, Raymond suffered a crushed spine for which he has already undergone three major surgeries. Raymond also takes painkillers to help him accomplish day-to-day tasks and has been unable to return to work even in a non-driving position.
Raymond made a claim for faulty vehicle accident compensation against Volvo Trucks, the manufacturers of the vehicle, Consolidated Metro – the manufacturer of the aluminium hubs – and the company that had modified the lorry – Wittke Manufacturing – alleging that the companies were aware that the hubs did not have sufficient strength to bear the loads placed on them.
At the U.S District Court for the Northern District of California Judge Maxine Chesney and an assembled jury heard that a number of hubs had already failed throughout the country and there were an estimated 25,000 vehicles in a similar condition.
The three defendants claimed that the hubs only cracked when excessive weight was put on them by irresponsible waste management companies, but Raymond´s solicitor was able to produce emails from 2004 which demonstrated that the three defendants were aware of a problem but failed to recall the lorries or replace the hubs that had been fitted to them.
Have been told by Judge Chesney to offer a settlement but failing to do so, the three defendants were found liable for Raymond´s injury and the division of liability and award of damages was left to the jury´s discretion.
After the jury had deliberated for 10 hours, liability was divided between all three defendants with Consolidated Metro being assigned 52 percent at fault, Volvo Trucks 30 percent at fault and Wittke Manufacturing 12 percent. The remaining 6 percent was allocated to Raymond´s employer who was not named as a defendant.
The jury awarded Raymond 7.5 million dollars in general damages for the pain he had suffered with a further award of 2.4 million dollars in special damages for lost income and medical expenses. Raymond´s wife – Regina – was also awarded 1.5 million dollars in faulty vehicle accident compensation for being deprived of marital and family relations since the accident.
A Texas woman, whose car was hit by a delivery lorry while its driver was talking on a mobile phone, has been awarded 24 million dollars in driver on mobile phone accident compensation for her injuries.
Vanice Chatman-Wilson (37) from Corpus Christi in Texas, sustained injuries to her back, spine and neck in 2010, when her Ford Fusion was struck by a Coca Cola delivery truck driven by Araceli Vanessa Cabral (30) who had been talking on her mobile phone at the time. As a result of the accident, and despite undergoing a lumbar operation in February 2011, Vanice was left with permanent nerve damage.
Although using a mobile phone while driving in Texas is not against the law, Vanice sought legal advice and brought a claim for driver on mobile phone accident compensation against Coca Cola Enterprises.
Coca Cola defended the claim by saying that they had a hands-free policy for all their drivers however, at the Corpus Christi High Court, jurors heard evidence from Vanice´s solicitors that the policy was not enforced and from the driver of the truck that she had never been told about the dangers of driving while using a mobile phone.
Finding in favour of Vanice, the jury awarded her a total of 24 million dollars driver on mobile phone accident compensation to account for her pain and suffering and punitive damages – an award which her solicitor described as a warning to Coca Cola and other large companies to review the use of mobile phones by their truck drivers.
The family of a boy, who sustained severe spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy due to an 81 minute delay in performing an emergency Caesarean operation, have been awarded 78.5 million dollars in brain injury at birth compensation by a jury in Philadelphia.
Victoria Upsey (34) from Pottstown, Philadelphia, was admitted to Pottstown Memorial Medical Centre with signs of a placental abruption in August 2008 when she was 36 weeks pregnant. As foetal monitoring proved inconclusive, the duty obstetrician performed a bedside ultrasound examination from which he concluded that the child had died. However, Victoria felt that her baby was still alive and, after summoning the ultrasound technician from his home, a heartbeat was recorded and an emergency Caesarean operation performed.
At the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, the Honourable Mark Bernstein heard that the ultrasound equipment used by the obstetrician was more than ten years old and lacked the sensitivity of modern ultrasound equipment. Furthermore, the jury were told that the equipment had not been properly maintained nor checked that it was working properly since its introduction to the hospital despite the operating manual indicating that an annual service was required.
After a lengthy deliberation, the jury found in favour of the Upsey family and awarded 78.5 million dollars in brain injury at birth compensation for the pain and suffering experienced by their son, the future costs of medical care and lost earnings, and the emotional distress suffered by Victoria.
A school district in New Jersey has agreed to pay 4.2 million dollars in school bully injury compensation after allegedly failing to comply with State anti-bullying laws and protect one of its students from the threat of injury.
Sawyer Rosenstein of Woodland Park, New Jersey, was just twelve years of age in May 2006 when a known bully at the Eric Smith Middle School punched him in the abdomen, causing a clot to develop in the artery that supplies blood to the spine and paralysing Sawyer from the waist down.
In a subsequent claim for school bully injury compensation against the Ramsey School District, Sawyer´s parents alleged that his attacker had a history of violent tendencies and cited an incident that had occurred a year earlier when the bully had punched another student in the face on the school bus.
They claimed that school officials kept no record of the incident nor subjected the boy to any discipline, and supported their allegations with an email that had been sent to Sawyer´s guidance counsellor just three months before the attack asking for help to deal with the bullying he was already experiencing.
In the email Sawyer wrote “I would like to let you know that the bullying has increased. I would like to figure out some coping mechanisms to deal with these situations, and I would just like to put this on file so if something happens again, we can show that there was past bullying situations.”
After months of negotiations, the 4.2 million dollar settlement of Sawyer´s school bully injury compensation claim was made in an out-of-court agreement without admission of liability. Sawyer now attends Syracuse University where he is a freshman majoring in communication.
A New York volunteer firefighter, who sustained severe injuries when his car was crashed into by a Ford works vehicle, has been awarded 1.275 million dollars in compensation for car collision injuries by a jury at Oneida County Supreme Court.
Paul Tully of Utica, New York, was driving along the road adjacent to the NYE Ford facility in Oneida, New York, when his car was crashed into by a Ford works vehicle driven by Ford employee Keith Chase. Paul sustained crippling head and spine injuries which have prevented him from working since the accident in 2009 and which have cost his family a substantial amount in medical and care expenses.
During the subsequent investigation into the accident, Keith Chase admitted to not looking left into Genesee Street before pulling away from the manufacturing plant and, after seeking legal advice, Paul brought a car accident injury claim against Chase, Brian Guldy – the registered owner of the vehicle Chase had been driving – and NYE Ford.
The jury at Oneida County Supreme Court heard that an early offer of compensation for car collision injuries of 150,000 dollars had been rejected by Paul and his legal team and – as liability had already been admitted – the case had been brought to court for assessment of damages only.
After a short period of deliberation, the jury awarded Paul 675,000 dollars for past pain and suffering, 200,000 dollars for the pain and suffering he will experience due to his injuries in the future and 400,000 dollars to account for past and future medical and care expenses – a total of 1.275 million dollars in compensation for car collision injuries which will be paid in full by NYE Ford´s insurers.
A student, who sustained severe a severe brain injury while playing high school American football, has had his claim for school injury compensation settled out of court for 4.4 million dollars.
Scott Eveland, now 22, of San Marcos, California, collapsed at the side of the school´s playing field during the half-time interval of a high school American football game in September 2007. Scott was rushed to hospital where he was diagnosed with internal bleeding of the brain and underwent an emergency operation to save his life.
Despite more than a year of rehabilitation, Scott is still unable to walk or stand and can only communicate through a specially designed keyboard. Through his mother – Diane – Scott made a personal injury claim against the district education authority, alleging that the coaches of his football team had ignored warning signs of his condition and forced him to play.
The claim for school injury compensation was supported by a teammate, who testified in a deposition that Scott had missed several practice sessions complaining of headaches and had asked the head coach to sit out the game during which he collapsed because he was feeling unwell.
After their own investigation, the San Marcos Unified School District and Mission Hills High School – the school for which Scott played as a linebacker – agreed to settle Scott´s claim for school injury compensation without admission of liability.
The faulty hip replacement claims were made following a joint investigation by Newsnight and the British Medical Journal (BMJ) which alleged that “patients have been kept in the dark about their participation in what has effectively been a large uncontrolled experiment”.
The investigation revealed a long history of alleged cover-ups by the UK medical regulator – The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) – claiming that an eight-person “expert” advisory group, established by the MHRA in 2006 to report on the carcinogenic potential of metal-on-metal hip implants, contained two paid DePuy consultants and the director of product development for Smith and Nephew – another metal-on-metal hip replacement system manufacturer.
The advisory group – it was claimed in the Newsnight/BMJ investigation – had the brief to determine the “risk-benefit context” of metal-on-metal hip replacements and although a recommendation was made that patients should sign a consent form “which sets out the fact that the risks associated with metal wear debris have been discussed, including the genotoxic risk and possible sequelae”, the risks and the recommendation were never communicated to orthopaedic surgeons and their patients.
It was also alleged that the MHRA ignored faulty hip replacement claims from the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that high levels of metal ions had been found in umbilical cords and the placental blood of women who had received metal-on-metal hip replacements. Indeed, the MHRA criticised the FDA for issuing a warning without conducting a full risk analysis, when no clinical trials had been conducted in the UK to establish the safety of metal-on-metal hip replacements.
In 2008, Dr Tony Nargol – a consultant orthopaedic surgeon from the University of North Tees – advised DePuy Orthopaedics that he was witnessing a high level of metal debris in patients implanted with the Pinnacle metal-on-metal hip replacement system – not only the ASR hip replacement system which was recalled in 2010 due to a higher than expected failure rate. He claimed on the Newsnight report that he was witnessing system toxicity levels of 20-50 times the permitted levels, with patients suffering inflammations, muscle necrosis and bone decay. This information should have been passed onto the MHRA by DePuy, but was not done so.
The program concluded that the MHRA – the government agency which responsible for ensuring that medicines and medical devices work, and are acceptably safe – had failed in its duty of care by allowing faulty hip replacements to be introduced in the UK without due diligence and had failed to monitor the performance and safety of the metal-on-metal devices. In response to the faulty hip replacement claims, the MHRA announced it was advising 49,000 patients in the UK with “large-head” hip implants to have annual blood tests for life to check for the presence of metal ions.
An ex- mineworker in the UK, who received no warning of the dangers of asbestos while working in the mines for eighteen years, has been awarded mesothelioma cancer compensation amounting to 73,890 pounds (87,000 Euros).
Dennis Ball (92) from Beeston, Nottinghamshire, was employed by the National Coal Board at Sutton and Moorgreen Collieries between 1967 and 1985. It was there, it was alleged in his claim, that he contracted his mesothelioma cancer due to exposure to asbestos fibres and dust.
Mrs Justice Swift at London´s High Court heard that prior to being found on the floor of his flat by his step-son in March 2010, Dennis had been in good general health and had lead an independent, active life. The development of his illness had meant he had to forgo his independent status and live in a care home.
The judge heard that the Department of Energy and Climate Change – who now administer liabilities on behalf of the National Coal Board and British Coal Corporation – admitted that Dennis had probably been given neither warnings about the dangers of exposure to asbestos nor any personal protective equipment for his safety.
Finding in Dennis´ favour, the judge commented that “there is no reason to suppose that he is not experiencing a real fear about the ordeal that may be in store for him, together with distress at the knowledge of his imminent death and its cause. Importantly, however, the onset of illness forced him to leave his home and thus to lose his independence.” She awarded Dennis 73,890 pounds in mesothelioma cancer compensation to account for his suffering, loss of years and loss of amenity.
A nurse in Australia has won her claim for lifting injury compensation, and been awarded AU 500,000 dollars by a jury at the Victoria Supreme Court.
Margaret Pozzobon (58) from Nanawading, Melbourne, was employed by the Wantirna Aged Care Facility as a care nurse until February 2006, when she sustained severe cervical spine injuries during a night shift duty. The injury was due to lifting a resident of the facility who was known to suffer from bipolar disorder and was inclined to strip his bed and lie on the floor.
On the night Margaret sustained her injury, she was the only member of staff on duty and it was on the sixth occasion that she placed the resident back into bed that her injury occurred. Margaret´s injuries meant that she had to undergo surgery and she still has to be administered with spinal injections and nerve blocks because of the pain she still experiences.
After seeking legal advice, Margaret made a claim for occupational health compensation, claiming that the elderly resident should have been placed in a high care facility, in which case her injury would never have happened. The care facility disputed her claim and Margaret took her case to Victoria Supreme Court where, after an eight day civil trial, a jury found in her favour.
The AU 500,000 dollars award of lifting injury compensation is in respect of the pain and suffering that Margaret experienced at the time of her injury and during her treatment, the loss of earnings she has incurred since February 2006 and is the future as she is no longer able to work because of her disability, and to compensate the former nurse for the deterioration in her quality of life.
A women who sustained traumatic brain injuries after being hit by a lorry as she was walking home from the shops has had an award of 750,000 pounds approved in London´s High Court in respect of her multiple vehicle accident injury compensation claim.
Devbai Patel (60) from Neasden in London was walking home alongside the North Circular Road in January 2008 when two cars crashed on the busy dual carriageway. A lorry, trying to avoid impact with the two cars, mounted the pavement and hit Devbai – leaving her with multiple fractures and severe brain damage and killing the lorry driver.
Devbai was air-lifted to hospital where she underwent emergency surgery to save her life. She spent a further two weeks in an Intensive Care Unit and underwent months of rehabilitation before being allowed home. Even though Devbai made a good physical recovery, the brain damage she sustained means that she will require permanent care.
After seeking legal advice, Devbai´s family made a pedestrian accident claim against the car driver responsible for causing the multiple vehicle accident, who had also pleaded guilty to causing the death of the lorry driver by careless driving. Although liability was not in doubt, negotiating a suitable multiple vehicle accident injury compensation with the driver´s insurers took over two years.
In London´s High Court, Mrs Justice Cox heard that the two parties had now reached an agreement which would see Devbai and her family receive an immediate lump sum of 750,000 pounds with annual tax-free and index-linked payments of 25,000 pounds. Approving the settlement of multiple vehicle accident injury compensation, Mrs Justice Cox sent her best wishes to Devbai and her family.
An assistant golf professional, who sustained severe spinal injuries after falling onto the wooden collar of a golf course bunker, has been awarded 1.5 million dollars in compensation for injury at golf course by a New Jersey jury.
Floyd Romyns (44) of Blairstown, New Jersey, had been accompanying a group of golfers at the Newton Country Club in Morris County in June 2006 when, just prior to attempting his approach shot to the fifteenth green from a recently renovated bunker, he slipped on a loose piece of turf, fell into the bunker and hit his head on a wooden collar left behind from the renovation work.
The impact of his head on the collar left Floyd with head, neck and back injuries which resulted in multiple surgeries to fuse back in place six levels of cervical and thoracic spine. Floyd also had to undergo an extended period of rehabilitation and he still suffers pain from his injuries today. After seeking legal advice, Floyd made a personal injury compensation claim against All Turf Inc. of Long Valley, New Jersey – the company contracted by the Newton Country Club to renovate the bunkers.
The jury at the State Superior Court in Morristown dismissed claims that Floyd had contributed to his injuries by his own lack of care and found All Turf Inc negligent in not removing the wooden collar from the perimeter of the bunker. They awarded him 1.5 million dollars in compensation for injury at golf course to account for the physical and mental impairment Floyd had suffered along with the loss in his quality of life during his rehabilitation.
A man, who suffered substantial injuries after the car in which he was travelling was involved in a non-collision accident, has won his claim for injured car passenger compensation against the negligent driver and been awarded more than 2.7 million dollars by a jury in Lee County, Florida.
Jiri Renotiere, from Clay County, Florida, was a passenger in a car driven by Waldemar Baranowski in May 2009, when Baranowski – who, the trial jury heard, had been speeding in wet conditions – lost control of the vehicle as he approached a bend, crashed through a barrier and landed in a ditch.
Jiri was thrown from the vehicle, which burst into flames shortly after leaving the road. Lying close to the car, and having fractured his shoulder blade and several facial bones, Jiri sustained third-degree burns alongside the left of his body including his shoulder, arm and foot.
Both victims were rushed to Tampa General Hospital, were Jiri remained for four weeks recovering from his injuries and undergoing multiple skin graft operations. On his discharge from hospital, Jiri underwent a further three months of physiotherapy and rehabilitation.
As passengers in car accidents are entitled to claim for injured car passenger compensation against the driver of the vehicle in which they were travelling should that driver be responsible for their injuries, Jiri claimed that Baranowski was travelling too fast for the conditions and was reaching for his mobile telephone as the accident happened.
Following a four-day trial, in which witnesses to the accident confirmed that Baranowski had been driving carelessly, the jury awarded Jiri 1 million dollars for his pain and suffering during the accident and throughout his medical treatment, a further 1 million dollars to cover past and future medical expenses and 3,000 for lost property. Jiri´s wife, Marie, was also awarded 700,000 dollars for loss of Jiri´s services – a total of 2,703,000 dollars as settlement of Jiri´s claim for injured car passenger compensation.
The Italian subsidiary of Carnival Cruises responsible for the Costa Concordia has offered more than 3,000 passengers who were rescued from the stricken ship 11,000 Euros(14,460 dollars/9,180 pounds) in compensation for disaster cruise holiday.
The offer has been made to reflect the cost of personal effects lost in the tragedy and also any psychological trauma that passengers may have sustained during the sinking of the ship and rescue effort. The same level of compensation for disaster cruise holiday applies to children and, in addition to the offer, the cost of the disaster cruise holiday and any transportation costs to return home will also be refunded.
Those passengers that sustained a physical injury will be assessed individually, and passengers prepared to accept the offer of disaster cruise holiday compensation can expect to receive their settlement within a week. However, the Carnival Cruises payout has attracted condemnation from some consumer groups, who have criticised the proviso that passengers accepting the disaster cruise holiday compensation offer will have to forgo any future claims against the company.
The consumer group Codacons claims that passengers should be entitled to a minimum disaster cruise holiday compensation settlement of 125,000 Euros (164,300 dollars/104,300 pounds) for each passenger, and has recommended that passengers seek professional medical advice before accepting the company´s offer of compensation for disaster cruise holiday.
A pub licensee, who sustained injuries to her face when she refused a customer entrance to her bar, has been awarded 500 pounds in personal injury damages following a hearing at Kirkaldy Sheriff Court.
The Court heard how Agnes Gallagher of the Greenside Hotel in Leslie, Fife, had seen Leala Brownlie of Glenrothes, Fife, being sick outside the hotel premises at approximately 9.15pm on the night of March 26 2011. Assuming that her sickness was due to an excess of alcohol, Agnes refused to allow Brownlie to return into the hotel bar.
After a heated discussion, the assault on the pub licensee followed, with Agnes sustaining cuts and bruises to her face and damage to two of her teeth which needed dental treatment to repair them. The assailant left the premises, but Agnes was able to track her down on Facebook where – the Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court heard – Brownlie had posted that she gave the landlady of the Greenside a good kicking.
Sheriff James Williamson heard that Brownlie admitted assault but, in her defence, had previously been of good character and regretted the incident. Acknowledging that a custodial sentence would have been inappropriate in the circumstances, Sheriff Williamson ordered Brownlie to pay Agnes 500 pounds in personal injury damages.
A professional tennis coach and keen cyclist, who was run over by a hit and run driver and suffered terrible brain injuries, is to receive four million pounds in compensation following a judgement in favour of his bicycle accident claim at London´s High Court.
Patrice Gougam (55) from Enfield, Middlesex, had been cycling along the A1000 Barnet to Hatfield road in November 2009 when the accident happened. He was run over by a Land Rover driver by Michael Elliot (66) of Potters Bar, Hertfordshire who drove away from the scene of the accident, unaware of the injury he had caused – only to give himself up on his return journey later in the day.
Patrice suffered catastrophic brain damage which left him in a coma for three weeks. He spent six months at the National Hospital for Neurosurgery and Neurology in Bloomsbury, London, before being transferred to a hospital closer to his home where he remained for a further fifteen months. He now requires round-the-clock care and he is wheelchair bound and unable to feed himself.
Assessing Patrice´s bicycle accident claim, the High Court heard that Michael Elliot had been found guilty of reckless driving, had served eight months in prison and been banned from driving for three years as a result of the accident. Finding in favour of the claimant, the Court awarded four million pounds to Patrice, to be administered by his wife Virginia.
A man who suffered a broken leg and head injuries, when his motorised wheelchair was hit by a negligent motorist on a road crossing, has settled his pedestrian accident claim with the driver´s insurers.
Arthur Billingsley of Olivette, Missouri, was in the process of crossing the town´s main road in his wheelchair when he was in collision with a car driven by Willette Jackson of St. Louis, Missouri. After being attended at the scene by an ambulance, Arthur was taken to St. John´s Mercy Medical Centre in Olivette where he was treated for concussion and underwent surgery for a broken leg.
After speaking with his solicitor, Arthur made a pedestrian accident claim for compensation against Ms Jackson; stating that she had been driving without due care for the road conditions and had failed to see him on the crossing. The claim was not contested by Ms Jackson and after four months of negotiations, a settlement was agreed between her insurers and Arthur´s legal representative for 100,000 dollars in wheelchair injury compensation was agreed.
According to figures released by Kettering General Hospital Trust, more than a third of all hospital injury compensation claims made by its own staff are attributable to slips, trips and falls.
Representatives of the Northamptonshire hospital claim that the 300,000 pounds that they paid out over the past five years in compensation payments to its staff “is comparable with other hospitals” and that “many measures, training schemes and policies and procedures in place to prevent accidents”.
Nonetheless, in the five year period to April 2011, 40 staff made hospital injury compensation claims with a total value of 313,126 pounds. 115,527 pounds was paid out in hospital injury compensation claims following falls in the hospital which were attributable to the hospital´s own lack of care, with some of the other significant amounts being:-
98,635 pounds for lifting injuries
17,079 pounds due to incidents involving needles
10,000 pounds in hospital injury at work claims due to the environment
6,171 pounds paid to staff exposed to infections, electricity or other hazardous substances
Under the terms of the hospital´s public liability insurance, all injury at work claims less than 10,000 have to be paid by the hospital itself, making a significant hole in the funds available to invest in healthcare and the wellbeing of the hospital´s patients.
A skip delivery man from Lancashire, who lost his thumb and finger in a manual handling accident, has won his injuries at work claim and is to receive 175,000 pounds.
In January 2009, Heath Riley (45) from Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire was delivering a skip for Enviro Skips Ltd of Burnley, Lancashire, when the skip he was intending to unload slipped due to being placed inside another insecurely and crushed his hand. When an ambulance was summoned, Heath had the thumb of his right hand amputated at the scene and doctors failed to save his index finger during microsurgery at the Royal Preston Hospital.
Heath also lost the use of two other fingers in his hand and, after being discharged from hospital, sought legal advice about making an injuries at work claim. It was discovered following an investigation into the accident that the skips had been loaded insecurely as they were damaged and unsafe to use. As such Enviro Skips Ltd should have withdrawn them from service and not allowed them to be stacked to go out for delivery.
In an out-of-court settlement for hand injury compensation, Heath was awarded 175,000 pounds to account for his pain and suffering at the time of the accident, his future loss of earnings as he will no longer be able to work in a position which requires manual labour, and for the deterioration in the quality of his life as he will no longer be able to pursue his DIY hobbies.