Infection after an Operation

Compensation for an Infection after an Operation

This article contains information about claiming compensation for an infection after an operation when you – or somebody close to you – have contracted a post-operation infection due to the poor professional standards of a hospital, clinic or surgery. As you will see from the information below, no two claims for an infection after an operation are the same, and you should always discuss the individual circumstances of your medical injury with an experienced Irish solicitor to determine that you have a claim for an infection after an operation which is worth your while to pursue.

The Irish health service is under-funded and under-resourced, yet mostly provides an excellent service to those who need it. In rare occasions standards of hygiene are not maintained and, at a time when patients are ill and recovering from surgery, it is more likely that an infection from an operation will develop with potentially devastating consequences. Claiming compensation for an infection after an operation enables you to receive financial damages for the suffering you experienced at the time of your post-operation infection, provide the best medical care if the infection has ongoing consequences and support your family while you are unable to work.

Establishing Medical Negligence for an Infection after an Operation

The development of an infection after an operation does not necessarily mean that medical negligence has occurred. In order to establish medical negligence and be eligible to claim compensation for an infection after an operation, it has to be shown that there was a lack of care or incorrect care that led to a post-operation infection developing. It also has to be proven the infection that you developed resulted in you suffering some significant harm or injury which “at the time and under those circumstances” was preventable.

In order to establish that medical negligence has been responsible for an infection after an operation, your solicitor would engage the services of an expert clinical advisor, who would study your medical notes and ascertain whether you have contracted a post-operation infection which could have been avoided had the standard practice of care not been deviated from. If a preventable injury has been sustained, which is not attributable to your own lack of care, you will be able to make a claim for infection after an operation compensation.

Procedures for Claiming Infection after an Operation

The procedure for claiming infection after an operation compensation is that your solicitor will send a Letter of Claim to the negligent hospital, clinic or surgery, advising them that you are making a claim for an infection after an operation and supporting your claim with the evidence collected of medical negligence. If your claim for an infection after an operation is particularly strong, your solicitor will invite the negligent hospital, clinic or surgery to make an offer of compensation – as medical negligence compensation claims for an infection after an operation are not assessed by the Injuries Board Ireland.

If medical negligence is admitted, and an offer of compensation for an infection after an operation is forthcoming, your solicitor will advise you whether the offer represents a fair and adequate settlement of compensation or whether it would be recommended to negotiate for more. Court action will only be necessary if the negligent hospital, clinic or surgery denies liability for your post-operation infection or disputes how much infection after operation compensation your solicitor believes you are entitled to.

How Much Compensation for an Infection after an Operation?

How much compensation for an infection after an operation you will be entitled to will depend on the nature and severity of your infection in relation to your age and whether any pre-existing conditions were identified prior to you undergoing surgery. Both the physical and the emotional consequences of your negligent care will be accounted for in an infection after operation claim, and it is advisable that you maintain a diary to record the times after your discharge from hospital on which any consequences of your infection leave you unable to complete day to day activities or enjoy leisure and social pursuits.

You will also be able to recover financial costs – both past and future – in an infection after operation claim for compensation. These costs can relate to any expenses you have incurred in the pursuit of alternate medical treatment for your infection if it developed once you had been discharged from hospital, the cost of home care if required and other sundry costs that you might have experienced – such as the cost of public transport if the infection means that you were unable to drive. Any lost income due to the negligent care you received can also be recovered in a claim for an infection after operation compensation for the period during which you are unable to return to work.

Infections after Operations and the Statute of Limitations

It is unlikely that it will be established within a short period of time that your post-operation infection was the result of a breach in the standard practice of care and attributable to medical negligence. Therefore, the Statute of Limitations in Ireland allows you two years from the date on which you discover that your infection was due to medical negligence in which to make a claim for infection after operation compensation.

This “date of knowledge” can sometimes be later than the date on which you underwent the operation or noticed any deterioration of your health, and allows your solicitor to collect evidence of negligence and prepare an infection after operation claim which accounts for all the consequences to your quality of life which you may have experienced due to a post-operation infection.

Further Information about Compensation for an Infection after an Operation

If you believe that you – or somebody close to you – have suffered an injury due to a preventable infection after an operation, you are invited to call our freephone Solicitors Advisory Panel and speak directly to an experienced Irish solicitor. Our solicitor will discuss with you the possibility of making a claim for infection after operation compensation and try to establish wherever possible that you have an infection after operation claim which is worth your while to pursue.

After speaking with our solicitor you are under no obligation to proceed with a claim for compensation for an infection after an operation, but it is in your best interests to seek professional legal advice at the first practical opportunity. If it is established that you have a viable infection after operation claim, it could take a considerable amount of time to determine the full consequences of your medical injury and how much compensation for an infection after an operation you could be entitled to. To rush a claim, and be undercompensated for post-operation infection, could result in receiving insufficient compensation to pay for the medical care you need to return to a full and active life.

See also: compensation for surgical complications, medical procedure errors, clinical malpractice in Ireland, surgical errors.