Case studies

Claim for patient’s death following delay in diagnosis and management of infection

We settled a claim against Barking, Havering & Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust on behalf of the daughter of a man from Ilford who died following a delay in recognising and treating his serious infection.

On 19 July 2010, he was admitted to Queen’s Hospital, Romford, with a suspected lower limb abscess. While in hospital, he sustained a DVT and subsequently sepsis from which he did not recover. He died on 31 August 2010.

Had the trust carried out the correct DVT risk assessments and subsequently prescribed the patient anticoagulants, the DVT could have been avoided. It was the claimant’s case that had intravenous antibiotics been prescribed earlier, the patient would have been likely to survive. 

After carrying out investigations and obtaining expert evidence, a claim was made against Queen’s Hospital in relation to the delay in prescribing the intravenous antibiotics. Following service of proceedings, the trust admitted there was a delay but denied early administration of the antibiotics would have made any difference to the outcome. However, negotiations ensued and a settlement was reached between the parties.

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