Advising with empathy and experience

Award for man who suffered sight loss after surgery.

Grace Monteith of the specialist CNCI team at Harrowells has recently recovered substantial compensation for an elderly client who was referred to a private hospital in order to undergo eye surgery funded by the NHS.  Problems arose during and after the surgery but the difficulties were not immediately investigated or followed up.  As a consequence, the Claimant, who already had compromised vision in one eye, was rendered virtually blind. 

This was a complex claim in which liability remained contested throughout. 

The relationship between the NHS referrer and the private hospital was unclear. 

The Claimant had consented to surgery including the usual risks associated with the procedure.  Evidence indicated that the complication arising from the procedure did not in itself give rise to a claim but medical evidence also indicated that the difficulties that arose during surgery were not properly addressed.  Thereafter evidence indicated that the NHS had failed to manage the Claimant's condition and had not arranged for him to access further treatment that could have improved the outcome.

The claim settled for £190,000.00 for general and special damages and a significant proportion of the award reflected the Claimant's ongoing care needs.  The claim was settled by negotiation and the award reflects liability both on the part of Spire Healthcare (who indemnified the operating surgeon) and the NHS Trust responsible for the initial referral and aftercare.