Female health claims
This category of claims includes pregnancy, gynaecology and childbirth injury/illness claims.
Pregnancy and childbirth claims
Pregnancy and childbirth is usually a happy time for the mother and her family and friends. It is seen as a time to celebrate the birth of a new life and one that will bring many years of pleasure to the parents.
Most births pass by without any problems but unfortunately there are women who have a traumatic experience during the birth which can affect them and their baby.
If a mistake is made before or during the birth then it can have serious consequences. This includes a failure to spot any possible birth defects or congenital abnormalities of the unborn child even following an ultrasound scan.
This can occur during the ante-natal stage.
Then there is damage caused during childbirth, for example over excessive use of medical instruments such as forceps during the delivery or failure to suture an episiotomy incision.
Note: an episiotomy is an obstetrics procedure in which an incision is made in the area between the anus and vagina to ease the delivery of the baby.
In some cases, mistakes made during the delivery can result in permanent disability or death of the baby.
If you have sustained an injury as a result of negligence during childbirth then you may be able to claim compensation.
It is possible to sustain an injury or illness as a result of mistakes made during a gynaecological procedure. Examples of these include abortion, surgery and contraceptive procedures.
Compensation can also be applied for in cases where there is an ‘unexpected birth’: in other words, you may have undergone sterilisation or a similar procedure to prevent an unwanted birth and this fails. You conceive a baby which was not planned for or wanted.
An example of this is a failed tubal ligation procedure. This surgical procedure involves typing off the woman’s Fallopian tubes so that fertilisation cannot take place. But if this goes wrong then fertilisation does take place which result in a baby.
Other cases involve side effects from hormone contraceptive injections or implants; or from intrauterine devices or systems.
Claims are also made for incidents of gynaecology surgery in which the patient has suffered damage due to incompetence or lack of care. These include: dilation and curettage (D&C) and hysterectomy.
Impact of gynaecology/childbirth/
A mistake or lack of care in any of these areas results in a great deal of physical and emotional distress for the patient.
If negligence has resulted in serious damage to your baby or has led to its death then the consequences are devastating. The effect can be traumatic to both you and your partner and can last for many years.
This is a life changing situation for couples hoping to start a family.
Damage caused due to neglect or incompetence may have resulted in you being unable to conceive or infertility which is a terrible blow for you and your family. This would be a devastating piece of news for most women.
Equally distressing is a missed or late diagnosis of cervical cancer. Like many forms of cancer this is treatable if detected early but if it has been allowed to progress to a late stage then the chances of survival are reduced.
What is worse is the knowledge that this situation could have been prevented.
There is no amount of money that will undo the physical and psychological damage caused by any of these situations. But compensation may help with any additional expense caused by the injury or illness.
For example, if you have had to take time off work due to your injury then this may have affected your earnings and pension rights. Not to mention the impact upon you and your family’s finances.
If your baby was injured during birth or there was a failure to diagnose a health problem with him/her then this will cause a great deal of distress.
If you have become injured due to negligence or your baby has suffered unnecessary trauma then think about making a claim for compensation.
Making a claim for compensation for a female health injury
Find a personal injury lawyer or solicitor who has experience in dealing with what is a specialist type of claim. They should knowledge and understanding of what is involved as well as employing tact and sensitivity to do so.
This sensitivity is especially important when dealing with claims for issues such as these which can cause a great deal of emotional stress and trauma.
A personal injury lawyer should understand the impact this type of injury has upon the patient and her family and bear this in mind when progressing with the claim.
If you want to know more about this process then visit our making a claim for compensation section.
Time limit for claiming compensation for a female health injury
There are strict time limits in regard to personal injury claims. These are usually set at 3 years from the initial diagnosis of an illness or the date of the accident.
But this time limit differs in certain types of claims.
Check with your personal injury lawyer or solicitor about the time limit for a compensation claim.
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