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12 July 2018
A claim for clinical negligence often comes without warning, and can be an unpleasant shock. Solicitors' letters may be written in a forceful and occasionally threatening style; the claim will be based largely on what the patient has told them and may not seem fair, accurate or reasonable to you.
If you receive a notification of a claim:
Don't take the tone or contents of the letter personally. Remember that, even with the stress and upset you may feel because of one unhappy patient, many of your patients value your help and expertise and are thankful for the treatment you provide.
We will need to see all the papers and records you have that relate to the claim. Don't withhold anything, and don't make any changes to the documents – no matter how brief, scruffy, abbreviated or hurriedly written they are.
If you feel that you need to give us more information, or you want to make a correction, you will need to give this to us in a separate note. We will scan the records you send to us and return them to you once the case is closed.
You will need to provide the following:
We will need all the records you have in your control relating to the patient, which may include:
Send the original documents, together with the original envelope and packaging, to us as soon as possible.
To protect confidentiality, we disguise the names of any other patients involved, for example those in an appointment diary. Please let us know the identity of anyone else named in the records so we can make sure there are no breaches of confidentiality.
This guidance was correct at publication 12/07/2018. It is intended as general guidance for members only. If you are a member and need specific advice relating to your own circumstances, please contact one of our advisers.
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