Anaesthetic Error Claims
Anaesthesia is essential for a wide range of medical procedures, helping to prevent or reduce pain to the patient. Anaesthesia should always be administered by a trained anaesthetist relying on their training and judgement to ensure the right dosage is given to each patient.
However, where mistakes are made in the administration of anaesthetic, it can cause significant pain and trauma to the patient as well as other potentially much more serious consequences for their health.
If you believe anaesthetic errors were made during your treatment, resulting in a negative impact, whether physical, psychological or both, you may have grounds for a medical negligence compensation claim.
Wolferstans’ medical negligence solicitors have extensive experience in anaesthetic negligence claims with a strong track record of success for our clients. We can quickly and accurately assess the strength of your claim and how much compensation you may be entitled to, then guide you through the entire claims process ensuring you have the best possible chance of a fair outcome.
We offer a no win, no fee anaesthetic negligence claims service, as well as various other funding options, and are experts in non-confrontational dispute resolution, meaning we can usually resolve your claim without the need for you to attend court.
We offer a free initial no obligation consultation during which we will be able to tell you if you have a claim worth investigating further.
To arrange your consultation please contact the new client team on 01752 648888.
Our anaesthetic error claims service
We support clients across England and Wales with a wide range of medical negligence claims related to anaesthetic errors, including those involving:
- Patient being conscious during surgery due to ineffective anaesthetic
- Patient feeling pain during a procedure due to ineffective anaesthetic
- Brain damage due to lack of oxygen while patient under anaesthetic e.g. where patient is not correctly intubated to keep their airways open
- Nerve injury due to damage caused by injections, epidurals or nerve blocks
- Spinal cord injury due to mistakes injecting anaesthetic into the spine
- Stroke due to negligent anaesthetic errors
- Leaving an anaesthetised patient unattended
- Contaminated anaesthetic drugs
How anaesthetic error claims work
While making a medical negligence claims for anaesthetic errors might seem complicated and intimidating, our experienced clinical negligence lawyers can provide empathetic, practical support to keep the process simple and stress-free.
A typical anaesthetic negligence claim will involve:
- Building your case e.g. applying for medical records, collecting witness evidence and consulting independent medical experts.
- Contacting the relevant healthcare provider with the details of your claim.
- Ensuring the defendant responds to your claim in a timely fashion.
- Assessing the defendant’s response and advising you of your options.
- Negotiating with the defendant and/or using alternative dispute resolution (ADR), such as mediation or independent evaluation, to secure a suitable settlement.
- Submitting your claim to the relevant court and representing you at a court hearing where required to resolve the matter.
Find out more about the process of making a clinical negligence claim.
Funding an anaesthetic negligence claim
When thinking about making a compensation claim for anaesthetic errors, concerns about the cost of a claim should never be a deciding factor. No matter what your financial situation, if we believe you have solid grounds for a successful claim, we will find a funding option that suits your circumstances.
For most of our clients, this means we will take on your claim using a ‘no win, no fee’ model, also known as a ‘conditional fee agreement’. The advantage of this approach is that you do not need to pay any legal fees or expenses to start a claim. You will then only need to make a contribution towards these costs if you claim is successful and we secure compensation for you.
With a no win, no fee anaesthetic negligence claim, the fees you pay will be based on a percentage of any settlement we secure, so you will have complete transparency from the outset and will always get the maximum benefit from any compensation we win for you.
Another funding option some clients used is legal expenses insurance. This is commonly offered as an optional extra with home insurance, as well as with some bank accounts and credit cards, so may be worth considering if you have this type of cover.
To discuss your options for covering the cost of an anaesthetic error claim, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Find out more about funding a medical negligence claim.
Our expertise in anaesthetic negligence claims
Our medical negligence lawyers have been assisting clients all over England and Wales with anaesthetic error claims for many years. In that time, we have secured compensation totalling millions of pounds for our clients, building a reputation as respected leaders in our field.
Wolferstans is accredited by the Law Society for Clinical Negligence, recognising our particular expertise in this area. We are also Lexcel accredited by the Law Society for excellence in legal practice management and client care.
Various members of our medical negligence team are also on the Law Society and AvMA (Action against Medical Accidents) Specialist Clinical Negligence Panels and have been accredited by APIL (Association of Personal Injury Lawyers) as Clinical Negligence Specialists and Brain Injury Specialists.
Common questions about claims for anaesthetic errors
You will normally need to make an anaesthetic error claim within 3 years of the alleged negligence occurring. You may have longer if the error or its effects only come to light later, in which case the 3-year time limit will normally be counted from the time when you became aware of the issue.
If the anaesthetic error claim is for someone who was under 18 at the time the alleged negligence occurred, their parents or guardians will have until they turn 18 to make a claim. If this is not done, the affected person will then have a further 3 years to bring a claim on their own behalf.
If the person affected by an anaesthetic error does not have the capacity to bring a claim, e.g. due to a stroke limiting their ability to communicate, there is no time limit for someone to bring a claim on their behalf.
If a loved one has died as a result of an anaesthetic error, the 3-year time limit will normally apply from when negligence occurred. However, if the death occurs during this 3-year period, the personal representatives of the deceased’s estate will normally be allowed an additional 3 years from the date of death to bring a claim.
Determining whether the relevant time limit has expired can be extremely complicated, so it is always worth seeking the advice of a specialist medical negligence lawyer, however long ago the negligence occurred.
The amount of compensation you may be entitled claim to will depend on the level of injury caused as a direct result of the anaesthetic error and the impact this has had on the claimant’s lifestyle.
However, the actual compensation you can achieve will be heavily dependent on the experience and skill of your legal team. Whether a settlement is decided outside of a court through negotiation or alternative dispute resolution, or damages are awarded in court by a judge, the value your lawyers place on the claim and their ability to support this valuation will be critical.
It is therefore essential to use medical negligence lawyers with specific expertise in these types of claims to ensure you receive fair compensation.
In the majority of cases, anaesthetic negligence claims can be resolved out of court, either through an early settlement offered by the defendant before court proceedings are initiated or via a pre-trial settlement after court proceedings have been begun but before a hearing takes places.
This approach is usually to the claimant’s advantage as it means their claim can be resolved faster, at lower cost and with a lot less stress and disruption. However, in those cases where court action is required to achieve a fair outcome, we can offer the experienced advocacy you need to ensure your interests are effectively represented.