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Kimmo Boote
    • Kimmo Boote

    • Associate Chartered Legal Executive
    • View profile
 

An increase to the small claims limit?

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Just a quick refresher, currently personal injury (this includes clinical negligence) claims with a value of less than £1,000, fall within the ‘small claims track’. The result of this is that a prospective claimant is unable to recover...

Working as clinical negligence lawyer

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As part of its ongoing drive to reduce the NHS’ annual budget of £115 Billion by £5 Billion, the Department of Health recently looked at reducing the costs of clinical negligence claims against the NHS – including the introduction of...

Cauda Equina Syndrome

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Cauda Equina – which the Latin Scholars amongst you will know translates to “horse’s tail” - describes the appearance of the nerve roots coming out at the bottom end of the spinal cord. Cauda Equina Syndrome (CES) relates...

Discount Rates and how they affect compensation

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When personal injury claimants are awarded a lump sum of compensation payments that include damages for future loss, eg future loss of earnings, the amount they receive is adjusted according to the interest they can expect to earn by investing the...

The Knee

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The Knee – it’s a complex bit of kit. The knee, as you will know, is a hinge joint. This means that it can either be flexed (folded ‘backwards’) or extended. It is a complex joint, as the femur (thigh bone) joins...

Pressure Ulcers

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Pressure Ulcers – what they are, who is at risk, prevention & treatment. This is a Photo of Maggot Therapy – which is occasionally used to treat serious Pressure Ulcers. Pressure ulcers are an injury that breaks down the skin and...

Complications with the Prostate Glands

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Complications with the Prostate Glands In males, the urethra is the tube that runs from the bladder to the tip of the penis, carrying urine and at the time of ejaculation, sperm with seminal fluid. The prostate is a small olive-sized structure that...

Medico-Legal Ramifications

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Medico-Legal Ramifications when Diagnosing or Missing Infection Diagnosing infection is generally straight forward, as one will present with a fever along with relevant physical symptoms. Chest, gut and urinary tract infections are probably...

Sympathetic Ophthalmia

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This is a rare disease affecting the eyes, though it can have a profound impact. Essentially it is inflammation of both eyes, following trauma to one eye. It can leave the patient completely blind. Symptoms may develop from days to several years after...

Hernia

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A hernia occurs when an internal part of the body pushes through a weakness in the muscle or surrounding tissue wall. A hernia usually develops between your chest and hips. In many cases, it causes no or very few...

Botox

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Botox, which has it’s origins in the bacteria, Clostridium Botulinum, is used commercially in medicine, cosmetics (as can be seen in the picture above – where it’s been extensively used), and research. Infection with this type of...

Over-diagnosis

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This is a relatively new phenomenon in which a right diagnosis is made but subsequently harm arises. This may seem like an odd concept, though there are times when the impact of treating a condition is less beneficial than not treating it. The...

Scars

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S cars are areas of the skin where there is obvious residual appearance of an area of healing to the skin after it has been damaged. In the picture above – you can see a vertical scar to my forehead (in amongst the wrinkles!) – caused...

Brain Stem Death

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The Brain Stem (see the diagram above showing it in multi-colours) is responsible for many of the automatic functions of the body, including maintenance of breathing, the heart rate and blood pressure and the ability to swallow. It acts as a relay...

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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This is an image that the actress Brooke Shields posted of herself on Instagram – following surgery to both hands for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a common condition that causes a tingling...

Marfan Syndrome

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Question : what do Michael Phelps (pictured below), Abraham Lincoln and Osama Bin Laden have in common? Answer : they were all diagnosed with Marfan Syndrome. Marfan syndrome is a genetic disorder that affects the body’s connective...

Asthma Deaths

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Asthma is one of the most common medical conditions, with an estimated five and a half million people in the UK having this condition, i.e. 1 in 10 people. The startling statistic is that every 10 seconds there is a person having a...

Beware the Emergency Department - Part 2

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Beware the Emergency Department (Part II) Assessment This requires a mental health history including any history of documented social behavioural conditions, conduct disorders, ADHD, psychosis/schizophrenia or autism. In the medical history,...

Beware the Emergency Department - Part 1

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This article will look at the guidance provided on the management of patients who are violent in the setting of an Emergency Department (ED). Most assaults in hospital occur within the ED; the overall reported figures for violent attacks against all...

Bunions - Symptoms and treatment

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Bunions (Hallux Valgus) Bunions are quite common, and occur when the big toe pushes towards the adjacent toes, making the joint at the base of the big toe protrude outwards. This joint is the metatarsal to the phalanges (the equivalent...

Ankylosing Spondylitis - arthritis of the spine

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Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a form of arthritis that mainly affects the spine. It tends to occur in young people, being more common in males. The explorer Christopher Columbus, cricketer Mike Atherton and golfer Ian Woosnam all suffered from AS. ...

Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

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This essentially means wear and tear affecting one’s vision as they get older. The macula is an oval-shaped pigmented area near the centre of the retina of the human eye . It has a diameter of around 5mm. The...

Bariatric Surgery and the Medico-legal Aspects

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Owing to the obesity ‘epidemic’ afflicting the UK, Bariatric (“weight loss”) surgery is developing at a pace. Within bariatric surgery are 3 different types of procedures that are commonly used so that the patient can sustain a...

Treatment options for osteoarthritis of the knee

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Osteoarthritis (OA) is a common degenerative condition, reflecting wear and tear of a joint, linked to the ageing process. Trauma (for example sport’s injury), obesity or other causes of joint loading will tend to speed up the development of this...

Ectopic Pregnancy - Important Questions in Understanding the Basis of a Complaint

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Approximately 1 in 5 pregnancies lead to miscarriage, with over fifty thousand admissions following miscarriage occurring in the UK per year. One in a hundred pregnancies (roughly 2,500 per year) is ectopic: ie. a fertilised egg settles not in the womb, but...

Intestinal Polyps

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Intestinal Polyps are abnormal growths from the lining of the bowel, occurring mostly in the large bowel (aka large intestine/colon) , although there are some inherited conditions where polyps can be found anywhere in the bowel. The majority do not cause...

Clinical Negligence and NHS Indemnity

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A Definition of Clinical Negligence and NHS Indemnity Clinical negligence is defined as: “Professional negligence by act or omission by a health care provider in which the treatment provided falls below the...

Cauda Equina Syndrome and the Medico-Legal issues

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Cauda Equina (Latin for ‘horse’s tail’) describes the appearance of the nerve roots coming out at the bottom end of the spinal cord. Cauda Equina Syndrome (CES) relates to compression of nerves in the lumbar spine. These nerves if...

Acute appendicitis in children

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The appendix (see picture below) is a largely useless part of the bowel in the human, measuring around 10cm in length in an adult. However, some species of animal cannot be without it - for example the rabbit - as the grass that a rabbit eats needs...

Another use for glue

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You may be aware that there are a number of ways to close wounds. These include: Skin staples Stitches (also called sutures) Strips of paper with small grips to bring the wound together...

Definition of 'secondary victim' and it's relevance in a person injury / clinical negligence setting

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Secondary victim = someone who witnesses an accident which results in there being an injury, or fear of injury, to the primary victim. Consequently the secondary victim suffers nervous shock (psychological injury). Because of the potential for...

The other kind of cabbage...

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Firstly, a quick biology lesson/reminder: Arteries generally carry oxygenated blood from the heart to the body, and veins carry the de-oxygenated blood from the various parts of the body back to the heart. The...

What is Microcephaly & what is it caused by?

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The literal translation of Microcephaly is ‘small headedness’. Infants with Microcephaly are born with either a normal or reduced head size. Subsequently, the head fails to grow, while the face continues to develop at a normal rate,...

Landmark court case affecting fatal accident claims

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The recent Supreme Court decision in the case of Knauer –v- Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has been welcomed by clinical negligence and personal injury lawyers alike. It means that claimants will now be better off when it comes to assessing their...

What is Hypoxia?

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Hypoxia occurs when there is a deficiency in the amount of oxygen in the body. It can be throughout the body or in a localised area. Anoxia is where there is no oxygen at all. Hypoxia can occur for a number of reasons, including breathing in air...

Part 2 - Making a claim on behalf of a deceased individual

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Click here to read Part 1 of this article. In the following fictitious example, a Mr Gregory Dutton died at the age of 48 from testicular cancer. His GP was found to have been clinically negligent for failing to timeously refer Mr Dutton to an oncologist,...

Part 1 - Making a Claim on Behalf of a Deceased Individual

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In the following fictitious example, a Mr Gregory Dutton died at the age of 48 from testicular cancer. His GP was found to have been clinically negligent for continuously failing to refer Mr Dutton to an oncologist, therefore resulting in his premature...

A tale about Warfarin

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Warfarin is the most commonly used oral anticoagulant (drugs that prevent blood from clotting) used in the UK. It is often prescribed where there has been a significant blood clot that has caused a medical complication, such as pulmonary embolism (clot in...

George Osborne - Friend or Foe? What Has Been the Reaction to the Autumn Statement from the Industry?

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Click here to see the previous blog post this relates to. What has been the reaction to the Autumn Statement from the industry? Huw Evans, director general at the Association of British Insurers: "This...

George Osborne - Friend or Foe?

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The potential impact of the autumn statement for you and for clinical negligence lawyers… What was relevant in the Autumn Statement 2015 for personal injury and clinical negligence lawyers? The Government has...

A Sharp Practice? Needle-stick Injuries and their Relevance from a Clinical Negligence Perspective

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A needle-stick injury is, unsurprisingly, one where the skin is breached by contact with a sharp object such as a needle. What is surprising is that it is quite a common injury in clinical practice, with large numbers going unreported. Of those that are...

Torsion of the Testis - Part 2

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The first part of this article can be seen here . Problems from a medico-legal point of view Misdiagnosis of epididymitis – this is due to an infection of the surrounding part of the testis, called...

Torsion of the Testis

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Adapted from an article by Mr Ramesh Thurairaja , Consultant Urological Surgeon, Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospital, London What is it, and how to establish if there is potential clinical negligence for failing to diagnose it ...

Part 2 Recognising the Potential Existence of Brain Tumours in Children and the Implications from a Medical Negligence Perspective

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To read part 1 of the article please click here. Raised intracranial pressure Raised intracranial pressure may present with vomiting, headache and altered level of consciousness. This can be due to the tumour itself, but...

Part 1 Recognising the Potential Existence of Brain Tumours in Children and the Implications From a Medical Negligence Perspective.

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Brain tumours are the most common solid tumour in children and young people. Brain tumours account for about 25% of all childhood cancers, with an incidence of 5 per 100,000 children (aged up to 9 years of age). The location of tumours is divided into a...

Erb's palsy - what is it and can it happen as a result of medical negligence?

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There are 5 nerves connecting the vertebrae in the neck to the upper arm, which join together to form a complex union, a bit like a busy railway junction. This union of 5 nerves, as well as the formation of different nerves from that union that supply the...

Children: Should a CT Scan Take Place Every Time Someone Suffers a Head Injury?

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There are over 700,000 head injury attendances to A&E in England every year, about half of whom are children. Many injuries are minor and require relatively simple treatment and advice about possible complications occurring. Generally speaking,...

Adults: Should a CT Scan Take Place Every Time Someone Suffers a Head Injury?

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There are over 700,000 head injury attendances to A&E in England every year, about half of whom are children. Many injuries are minor and require relatively simple treatment and advice about possible complications occurring. Generally speaking,...

What is Shoulder Dystocia?

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Shoulder dystocia is a complication that arises when a baby delivering head first - ie. the normal way - gets stuck on the way out. The usual sequence of events is that when the head is delivered, it is facing backwards, i.e. towards the back of the mother....

Reducing NHS' Spending on Legal Costs - It's a 'No-Brainer' Surely?

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As part of it’s ongoing drive to reduce the NHS’ annual budget of £115 Billion by £5 Billion, the Department of Health is looking at reducing the costs of clinical negligence claims against the NHS – including the possible...

Causation Part II

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To recap, factual causation is the principle that a negligent act or omission has resulted in an adverse outcome/injury to an individual. Legal Causation is the principle that damage must not be ‘too remote’, it has to be within the scope of...

A Guide to Causation - Part 1

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When investigating the merits of a prospective claim, a Clinical Negligence Lawyer has to establish if the Defendant was in breach of their duty of care to the Claimant (ie were they negligent) and if so, did that negligence cause or ‘materially...

A Brief Layman's Guide to Part 36 Offers

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Under Part 36 of the Civil Procedure Rules, a party involved in litigation can adopt a pro-active, tactical approach by making what is known as a Part 36 offer to their opponent. The general principle is that the person making the offer does so in...

PERSONAL INJURY TRUSTS: What are they & could you benefit from one?

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A PI trust is a legal arrangement whereby Trustees manage compensation on behalf of the successful claimant, so that the claimant can retain their entitlement to means tested benefits, and also minimise any contribution towards the cost of...

BOLAM & MONTGOMERY Part 2

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To read part 1 click here . The concept of the ‘Bolam Test’ was scrutinised recently in the landmark case of Montgomery –v- Lanarkshire Health Board, 2015. Nadine Montgomery, who was a diabetic, was pregnant with a large baby. This meant...

BOLAM & MONTGOMERY Part 1

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To most people these surnames might conjure up images of the actor James Bolam, from the Likely Lads & New Tricks, and either the Scottish Golfer, Colin Montgomery, or the legendary World War Two Field Marshal. However to those of us in the world of...

Controversial Increase in Court Fees

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You may have heard the joke doing the rounds about how the Ministry of Justice have increased Court fees by over 600% in some cases, only it’s no joke, it is very real and has been since the 9th March 2015. This is what the Shailesh Vara MP,...